Everybody loves a French dessert but those desserts did not happen overnight. It took centuries of perfecting recipes and a lot of passion to create the French pastry and confectionary. They are one of a kind.
Everything started with the desire to serve something sweet after a meal. Later it evolved into the decadent world we know today. Fruits and cheese were not enough for the French people so a new type of art – the art of pastries and confectionaries was born. This resulted in a whole new world of cakes, pastries, and delicious confectionaries has come to life.
French Pastries Characteristics
You might have noticed that French pastries are very flaky and that’s because French cooks use a lot of butter to make them. Not to mention the fact that it takes a lot of time and effort to create that perfect flaky texture and amazing taste.
Some French desserts such as chocolate mousse or fruit-based mousse are very fluffy and light but meringues can also be characterized as fluffy and light even though the texture is completely different.
French desserts are also creamy and rich and that’s usually because French confectioners know how to make the best custard cream.
The French desserts we love so much incorporate at least two of the characteristics mentioned above. Creating the amazing French pastries and confectionaries is a long process that takes several hours. It involves a lot of dedication and attention to details so you can say the secret lies in the technique and passion, not in the ingredients. We can also say that during all the centuries of experimenting with recipes and techniques, French confectioners discovered how to combine various textures and tastes to obtain the best pastry or the best dessert.
Some Of The Best French Pastries
Crème Brûlée is a very simple dessert if you look at the ingredients – vanilla custard and sugar toppings. When you take a bite of a Crème Brûlée, simplicity is not the first word that comes to mind. The caramelized sugar on top makes this custard cream dessert so special. We should be very thankful that French confectioners decided it’s a good idea to burn the custard.
Layered desserts are very popular in the French pastry and confectionary world. Dacquoise is a layered cake made with layers of hazelnut-almond meringues, buttercream, and ganache. This cake is a chocolate heaven that tastes amazing and is very decadent. However, the texture is very light and airy despite the buttercream and the ganache.
Mille Feuille, also known as Napoleon, is another French layered dessert that is loved by numerous people. This is made with three layers of puff pastry filled with pastry cream, topped with almonds and a delicious icing. Whipped cream is sometimes used in mille feuille as well and so are other non-traditional ingredients such as cheese or fresh berries.
Choux pastry is a wonderful pastry used in many French desserts. It is made with basic ingredients – flour, water, eggs, and, of course, butter. This is not the typical flaky French pastry, this pastry is more puffy than flaky. It is used for cream desserts such as choux à la crème, eclairs, and profiteroles.