What is Mille Feuille
Mille Feuille translated means a thousand layers.
The translation of mille feuille is referring to the puff pastry layers of butter that are laminated in the process.
Mille feuille is a dessert that is made up of layers of puff pastry, vanilla custard, and is topped with royal icing and dark chocolate.
Mille feuille is decorated on top of the dessert using slits with a knife, giving it a signature look.
Mini Mille Feuille Recipe
- 4 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tsp salt
- 100 g butter cold
- 1 1/4 cups water
- 400 g butter room temperature
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1 vanilla bean
- 6 egg yolks
- 2/3 cup sugar granulated
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1 tbsp butter unsalted
- 2 cups milk
- 2 egg whites room temperature
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- 350 g icing sugar
- 60 g dark bittersweet chocolate
Puff Pastry – Day 1
- Measure flour and salt in a large mixing bowl.
- Cut in cold butter with a pastry blender until it resembles coarse crumbs.
- Pour water into a well in the center of the flour.
- Mix and knead for a few minutes until the dough becomes smooth.
- Wrap the dough in cling wrap. Chill dough for 30 min.
- Mix room temperature butter and flour together. Shape into a 9" square by beating it with a rolling pin in between 2 cling wrap pieces on a cutting board.
- Roll the dough out to a 12" square. Place butter in a diamond shape on the dough.
- Close the dough around the butter like an envelope and seal the edges so the butter is fully enclosed.
- Use flour as needed to roll the dough into a rectangle shape until its ~ 1/4" in thickness. Fold the dough like a letter. Fold one side over the center. Then fold other other side over the center creating 3 layers of even size.
- Roll out the dough into a rectangle again and repeat the letter folding process. Chill for 30 min.
- Repeat this process until you have completed 6 folds, chilling for 30 min in between every 2 folds.
- Your puff pastry is ready to be used. We only need half of the puff pastry recipe. Cut it in half, and place the other half in the freezer. Your puff pastry will keep in the freezer for 1-2 months. Keep the puff pastry in the fridge until you're ready to bake it.
Vanilla Custard – Day 1
- Place milk in a medium saucepan on low-medium heat.
- Cut the vanilla bean in half lengthwise with a sharp knife. Remove the vanilla beans and place them in the milk. Place the whole vanilla bean in the milk as well.
- Let the milk just come to a simmer, not boiling. Turn off the heat source and remove the milk from the heat. Let the vanilla bean infuse flavor for 15 minutes.
- In the meantime, separate your eggs. Place the egg yolks in a large heat proof bowl.
- Add sugar and cornstarch to the egg yolks and mix together with a whisk.
- Remove the vanilla bean from the saucepan. Slowly temper the eggs by adding a couple of tablespoons of the milk to the eggs at a time and vigorously whisking it until fully emulsified.
- Continue adding the milk very slowly until fully combined. You do not want to cook the eggs.
- Strain the mixture back into the saucepan by placing a sifter or strainer on top of your saucepan. Pour the mixture through the strainer and into the saucepan. Place the saucepan back on the heat source on medium heat.
- Whisk the mixture frequently. Heat the mixture until the cornstarch has activated. It should be a few minutes. You will feel the mixture becoming thickened with your whisk (~5 minutes).
- Cook for 1 more minute after it has started to thicken.
- Remove the vanilla custard from the heat and add the butter. Whisk the butter until it has fully melted into the custard.
- Let the custard cool until the pot can go in the fridge. Place a plastic wrap on top of the custard to prevent a film from forming.
- Chill the vanilla custard for 2 hours before using, or overnight until you're ready to make your mini mille feuille.
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
- Remove your puff pastry from the fridge (remember to only use half of the dough we made) and roll it out. Roll the dough into a long rectangle. It should be as thin as you can possibly make it. It should be ~1/4" in thickness or less.
- Cut the puff pastry on a cutting board into 3 equal portions.
- Using a large baking pan, place parchment paper on the baking pan to line it.
- Place puff pastry on the baking pan (usually only 2 pieces fit on the baking pan).
- Place another layer of parchment paper on top of the puff pastry.
- Put another baking pan on top of the puff pastry. You'll be using this is weigh down the puff pastry in the oven. This is critical, because you want your puff pastry as thin as possible for your dessert.
- Bake the puff pastry for 18- 25 minutes until golden brown in color.
- Place the puff pastry on a wire rack until full cooled.
Royal Icing – Make right before assembling
- In a stand mixer, place egg whites and lemon juice and beat on high for 30 seconds.
- Slowly add icing sugar into the stand mixer and beat on medium speed for 7-10 minutes until royal icing has a sheen or gloss to it. The icing should be thick. Adjust as needed with more icing sugar.
Chocolate – Make right before assembling
- Melt the chocolate and then place into a piping bag fitted with a narrow circle nozzle.
How to assemble Mini Mille Feuille
- Cut the puff pastry into 1.5" squares or a size that you're happy with. Each mini mille feuille will have 3 squares of puff pastry to make 1 dessert.
- Use a cupcake liner for each dessert to be assembled in. Place 1 square into the bottom of each cupcake liner.
- Place custard into a piping bag fitted with a medium circle nozzle.
- Pipe custard in circles onto the square of the puff pastry. Typically it looks nice if you pipe 4 circles of custard on the square.
- Add another square of puff pastry on top of the custard you just piped.
- Place another layer of custard, and then top again with your final square of puff pastry.
- Place the royal icing in a piping bag fitted with a small circle nozzle.
- Pipe royal icing on top of your puff pastry square. The royal icing will be sturdy enough not to fall off the edges of the dessert. Make sure you have clean lines for your icing so it stays intact on top of your dessert.
- Pipe lines of chocolate on top of the royal icing. Pipe at least 3 straight lines on each dessert.
- Using a sharp knife perpendicular to your lines that you piped, cut a slit through the chocolate layers gently to create a wave effect. Cut 2-3 slits per dessert.
- Store your mini mille feuille in the fridge until you're ready to serve it. Mini mille feuille will stay good for 2-3 days in the fridge, but it is better to serve it the same day you assemble it.