It’s Sunday morning. Everything is peaceful, the sun is peeking through the window and it will be some time before the rest of the house is awake. I used this quiet time to make once of my favorite biscuits. The simple-yet-elegant palmier.
These are fabulous sweet, crisp, airy biscuits made of nothing more than buttery, flaky puff pastry and granulated sugar. Roll out the pastry, shape, slice and bake. It’s that simple. The magic happens in the oven – the sugar caramelises, and the pastry puffs up into an elegant dual spiral shape, resulting in a palm-like shape that given them their name. They might be simple to prepare, but these crisp delicacies just whisper sophistication.
To make around 20 palmiers:
• 375g puff pastry (good quality, made with pure butter)
• 200g granulated white sugar
Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F). Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper, and cover with a spritz of non-stick spray.
Sprinkle 1/4 of the sugar on a worktop. Lay the pastry on top, and cover with another quarter of the sugar. Roll out until the pastry is a 25 x 25 cm square (if you’ve bought pre-rolled pastry, just pass the rolling pin lightly over the dough so that the sugar is pressed into it).
Starting from one side, roll the dough up until you reach the half-way point. Repeat from the other side. You should end up with two parallel rolls of pastry. Leave to rest in the fridge for 15 minutes.
Using a sharp knife, cut slices 1cm slices from the dough. Dip the underside in sugar, place on a baking sheet, and sprinkle with more sugar. Leave at least 10 cm between each palmier as they expand a lot!
Bake for around 15 minutes, turning the tray half way through, and remove when the biscuits are golden. Allow to cool for a moment on the tray, then move to a cooling rack. Store in an airtight container.
Worth making? These are really nice biscuits – very easy to make, but looking very sophisticated. Handy for those times when you want something fancy, but don’t have the time or inclination to put in a lot of work. These can also be varied to include a little spice with the sugar (cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom), or make savoury versions using pesto or grated cheese in place of the sugar.