Puff Pastry 101

Puff Pastry 101


DifficultyAdvanced

Mastered Pastry 101? Now it’s time to master these three puff pastry recipes.

This is the ultimate guide to making 3 different versions of puff pastry – classic, inverse and viennese!

Once you have mastered the fundamentals, you’ll be more confident in laminating all types of dough. These recipes can be used interchangeably for sweet or savoury dishes, try them all and see what your favourite is.


 


 

Ingredients


Classic Puff Pastry
Détrempe/Dough
 500 g Plain/All-Purpose Flour
 10 g Salt
 250 g Unsalted Butter, Cold & Cubed
 140 g Cold Water
 10 g White Vinegar
Beurrage/Butter Block
 250 g Unsalted Butter, Slightly Soft
Inverse Puff Pastry
Détrempe/Dough
 200 g Plain/All-Purpose Flour
 5 g Salt
 5 g White Vinegar
 120 g Double/Heavy Cream
 20 g Cold Water
Beurrage/Butter Block
 300 g Unsalted Butter, Slightly Soft
 100 g Plain/All-Purpose Flour
Viennese Puff Pastry
Détrempe/Dough
 310 g Plain/All-Purpose Flour
 12 g Sugar
 6 g Salt
 125 g Whole Milk
 35 g Whole EggCrack the egg, scramble it, then weigh
 60 g Unsalted Butter, Melted
Beurrage/Butter Block
 250 g Unsalted Butter, Slightly Soft
Shop the equipment

Method


Classic Puff Pastry - Détrempe/Dough
1

Into the bowl of a stand mixer, add the flour, salt and cold butter. Mix on a low speed with a paddle attachment until the butter has broken down and the mixture is sandy in texture.

2

With the mixer still on low, pour in the cold water and vinegar. Mix until the dough starts to clump together into large pieces.

3

Scoop it out onto the work surface and use your hands to pull it together, and gently knead briefly to make a more homogenous dough. Lightly flour it, and using a rolling pin, roll it into a rectangle, roughly 35x20cm (13.5”x8”).

4

Wrap it tightly in cling film and refrigerate for a minimum of 3 hours or ideally overnight.

Classic Puff Pastry - Beurrage/Butter
5

For the beurrage, take a large sheet of parchment paper and use a pen to draw a rough rectangular outline, 17.5x20cm (7x8”). This acts as a good guide if you are just starting out with puff pastry. Once you are more confident with it, you won’t need to draw the guide.

6

Flip the paper over and cut the butter into small rectangles. Roughly place the rectangles within the border you drew. Wrap the excess parchment around the butter, folding the edges in to match the guides of the neat square you drew. It can help to tape the edges together to stop the parchment paper from moving around or opening up as you roll.

7

Flip it back over and use a rolling pin to roll the butter, pushing it to the edges and creating an even layer of butter across the rectangle of parchment. You need to ensure all the small rectangles of butter you placed down, join together again to form one cohesive block of butter (otherwise when you go to roll the dough later, these will split apart causing poor lamination of your puff pastry). Therefore it is important the butter is slightly soft for this stage so that they ‘smoosh’ together as you roll and there are no seams. Place this in the fridge to chill for at least an hour or again, ideally overnight.

Classic Puff Pastry - Assembly
8

Temperature is key now - when laminating the puff pastry, if your butter is too cold when you go to roll it, it will crack. If it is too warm, it will simply leak out. Remove your butter from the fridge, and it is ready to use when it reaches a temperature of 12C/54F. At this temperature, you will see that the butter is slightly firm but flexible. You can test the temperature by placing a digital thermometer into the butter.

9

Just before it is at temperature, remove your dough from the fridge.

10

Place your butter into the centre of the dough so that the height of the dough and the butter match (20cm/8”).

11

Fold the exposed sides of dough into the centre so they meet in the middle.

12

Use your fingers to pinch the dough together to form a seam down the centre.

13

Using a sharp knife, carefully score the edges of the dough, where it is folded over the butter - this will release tension and make it easier to roll.

14

With the seam facing vertically towards you, turn the dough 90 degrees so the seam is now horizontal to your body and give the dough a quick roll, to give it a little bit of width.

15

Turn the dough 90 degrees again so the seam is vertical in line with your body and begin to roll the dough. Working relatively quickly. Apply even pressure and roll the dough into a long even rectangle, flouring the dough (and underneath the dough as needed). Don’t focus too much on the length of the rectangle, but more on getting it into an even rectangle, that ends up around 7.5mm thick (0.3”).

16

Once you are happy with the thickness and shape, dust off any excess flour with a brush, and if the ends of the dough have gone a bit wonky, cut them off so you have straight edges on either side.

17

Perform a single fold of the dough, where you take one-third of the dough and fold it up, then take the other third of dough and fold this over the top. This is called your ‘first turn’.

18

At this point, we need to perform our second turn, however if your dough is feeling too soft and warm at this point, it is best to wrap it in cling film, and refrigerate it for 15 minutes before carrying on.

19

If the dough still feels cool, perform the ‘second turn’. With the open seam facing you (i.e if you were looking at the dough straight on, you would be able to see where it has been folded over itself - see image above), use a sharp knife again, to score the edges of the dough where it is folded.

20

Turn the dough 90 degrees so the open seam is now horizontal to you and give the dough a quick roll, to give it a little bit of width.

21

Turn the dough 90 degrees again so the open seam is facing you again and begin to roll the dough. Roll the dough into a long even rectangle, flouring as needed, just as we did in step 15.

22

Dust off any excess flour, trim any rough edges, and perform another single fold. Wrap the dough and chill it in the fridge for 30 minutes.

23

After 30 minutes, we will repeat this rolling process another 4 times, so that we have done 6 single folds in total (or 6 ‘turns’). Score the edges of the dough, rotate it 90 degrees, roll it to give it some width, rotate it 90 degrees so the open seam is facing you, and roll it into a rectangle. Dust off the flour, rim the edges and perform a fold.

24

After you have finished your 4th turn, chill the dough for 30 minutes.

25

Once you have completed your 6th turn, chill the dough for an hour, and then the classic puff pastry is ready to use.

Inverse Puff Pastry - Détrempe/Dough
26

Add all of the ingredients into a medium bowl, and stir them together until there are no more dry ingredients.

27

Tip the mixture onto your work surface and knead it together for 1-2 minutes. Initially, it will be quite dry, but as you continue to work it, it will become smooth and gain some very slight elasticity.

28

As this is inverse puff pastry, the dough will go in the centre, and have the butter block wrapped around it. Therefore, roll the dough to the same size as the butter block we used for the classic puff pastry - 17.5cm/20cm (7x8”), by wrapping it in a tight square of parchment paper and using a rolling pin to roll it out. Place it in the fridge to chill for at leat 3 hours or ideally overnight.

Inverse Puff Pastry - Beurrage/Butter Block
29

Add the soft butter and flour to a stand mixer. Beat with a paddle attachment on a medium-low speed for 1-2 minutes, or until you have a smooth paste with no streaks of unincorporated butter.

30

Use a large sheet of parchment as a guide, and draw a rough rectangle, around 35cmx20cm. Flip this over and place the butter dough into the centre. Fold the edges of the parchment to form a rectangle and use tape to secure any loose edges in place. Flip it back over and use a rolling pin to roll it into a rectangle. Follow the guide in the video for clear instructions. Chill this for at least 3 hours.

Inverse Puff Pastry - Assembly
31

When you are ready to roll the dough, you need to pull the butter block out of the fridge and bring it to a temperature of around 9-10C (48-50F). If it gets too hot, it will be too soft to roll.

32

When the butter is close to temperature, pull the dogh block from the fridge, this needs to warm up to around 6-7C (42-44F).

33

Once at temperature, unwrap the butter block, and then place the dough block in the centre. Wrap the butter around the dough, sealing the seam with your fingers. Be quite generous with your flouring of the work surface and the dough here, or the butter will stick.

34

Cut the edges to release the tension and then with the seam horizontal to your body, roll the dough to give it a little width. Turn the dough 90 degrees, so the seam is now vertically in line with your body. Roll the dough, continuing to flour it as needed until it is a long rectangle, roughly 7.5mm thick (0.3”).

35

Trim off any wonky ends, and perform a single fold. At this point, the dough may feel quite soft/warm so it can be best to chill it in the fridge for 20 minutes before performing the second single fold. If you feel the dough is still cold, then go straight into the second fold.

36

Once you have completed the second fold, wrap the dough and chill it for 30 minutes in the fridge.

37

Then repeat the process as per the classic puff pastry - steps 23 onwards, until you have performed 6 total folds. Once you have completed 6 folds, chill the dough for at least an hour before using.

Viennese Puff Pastry - Détrempe/Dough
38

Add all the ingredients into a medium bowl and stir them together with a spatula. Then use your hands to gently squeeze it all together before lifting it onto your work surface.

39

Knead the dough by hand for about 5 minutes - it should feel more smooth and elastic at this point.

40

Use your hands to press the dough so that it is roughly 20cm/8” tall. Don’t worry about the width as we will roll it out later. Wrap the dough, and chill it for at least 3 hours or ideally overnight.

Viennese Puff Pastry - Beurrage/Butter Block
41

Repeat the exact same process as the classic puff pastry butter block (Step 5) and chill it for at least 3 hours.

Viennese Puff Pastry - Assembly
42

Once they have both chilled, remove the dough from the fridge, and use a rolling pin to roll it into a rectangle, roughly 35cm/20cm (7x8”). Wrap it up again, and chill it for 1 hour.

43

When the dough has nearly chilled, remove the butter block from the fridge so that it can come to a temperature of around 12C/54F.

44

Remove the dough from the fridge, and place the butter block in the centre and wrap this around the butter.

45

Continue to follow all the steps for the classic puff pastry - from step 8 onwards. Once you have completed 6 folds, chill the dough for at least an hour before using.

Ingredients

Classic Puff Pastry
Détrempe/Dough
 500 g Plain/All-Purpose Flour
 10 g Salt
 250 g Unsalted Butter, Cold & Cubed
 140 g Cold Water
 10 g White Vinegar
Beurrage/Butter Block
 250 g Unsalted Butter, Slightly Soft
Inverse Puff Pastry
Détrempe/Dough
 200 g Plain/All-Purpose Flour
 5 g Salt
 5 g White Vinegar
 120 g Double/Heavy Cream
 20 g Cold Water
Beurrage/Butter Block
 300 g Unsalted Butter, Slightly Soft
 100 g Plain/All-Purpose Flour
Viennese Puff Pastry
Détrempe/Dough
 310 g Plain/All-Purpose Flour
 12 g Sugar
 6 g Salt
 125 g Whole Milk
 35 g Whole EggCrack the egg, scramble it, then weigh
 60 g Unsalted Butter, Melted
Beurrage/Butter Block
 250 g Unsalted Butter, Slightly Soft
Shop the equipment

Directions

Classic Puff Pastry - Détrempe/Dough
1

Into the bowl of a stand mixer, add the flour, salt and cold butter. Mix on a low speed with a paddle attachment until the butter has broken down and the mixture is sandy in texture.

2

With the mixer still on low, pour in the cold water and vinegar. Mix until the dough starts to clump together into large pieces.

3

Scoop it out onto the work surface and use your hands to pull it together, and gently knead briefly to make a more homogenous dough. Lightly flour it, and using a rolling pin, roll it into a rectangle, roughly 35x20cm (13.5”x8”).

4

Wrap it tightly in cling film and refrigerate for a minimum of 3 hours or ideally overnight.

Classic Puff Pastry - Beurrage/Butter
5

For the beurrage, take a large sheet of parchment paper and use a pen to draw a rough rectangular outline, 17.5x20cm (7x8”). This acts as a good guide if you are just starting out with puff pastry. Once you are more confident with it, you won’t need to draw the guide.

6

Flip the paper over and cut the butter into small rectangles. Roughly place the rectangles within the border you drew. Wrap the excess parchment around the butter, folding the edges in to match the guides of the neat square you drew. It can help to tape the edges together to stop the parchment paper from moving around or opening up as you roll.

7

Flip it back over and use a rolling pin to roll the butter, pushing it to the edges and creating an even layer of butter across the rectangle of parchment. You need to ensure all the small rectangles of butter you placed down, join together again to form one cohesive block of butter (otherwise when you go to roll the dough later, these will split apart causing poor lamination of your puff pastry). Therefore it is important the butter is slightly soft for this stage so that they ‘smoosh’ together as you roll and there are no seams. Place this in the fridge to chill for at least an hour or again, ideally overnight.

Classic Puff Pastry - Assembly
8

Temperature is key now - when laminating the puff pastry, if your butter is too cold when you go to roll it, it will crack. If it is too warm, it will simply leak out. Remove your butter from the fridge, and it is ready to use when it reaches a temperature of 12C/54F. At this temperature, you will see that the butter is slightly firm but flexible. You can test the temperature by placing a digital thermometer into the butter.

9

Just before it is at temperature, remove your dough from the fridge.

10

Place your butter into the centre of the dough so that the height of the dough and the butter match (20cm/8”).

11

Fold the exposed sides of dough into the centre so they meet in the middle.

12

Use your fingers to pinch the dough together to form a seam down the centre.

13

Using a sharp knife, carefully score the edges of the dough, where it is folded over the butter - this will release tension and make it easier to roll.

14

With the seam facing vertically towards you, turn the dough 90 degrees so the seam is now horizontal to your body and give the dough a quick roll, to give it a little bit of width.

15

Turn the dough 90 degrees again so the seam is vertical in line with your body and begin to roll the dough. Working relatively quickly. Apply even pressure and roll the dough into a long even rectangle, flouring the dough (and underneath the dough as needed). Don’t focus too much on the length of the rectangle, but more on getting it into an even rectangle, that ends up around 7.5mm thick (0.3”).

16

Once you are happy with the thickness and shape, dust off any excess flour with a brush, and if the ends of the dough have gone a bit wonky, cut them off so you have straight edges on either side.

17

Perform a single fold of the dough, where you take one-third of the dough and fold it up, then take the other third of dough and fold this over the top. This is called your ‘first turn’.

18

At this point, we need to perform our second turn, however if your dough is feeling too soft and warm at this point, it is best to wrap it in cling film, and refrigerate it for 15 minutes before carrying on.

19

If the dough still feels cool, perform the ‘second turn’. With the open seam facing you (i.e if you were looking at the dough straight on, you would be able to see where it has been folded over itself - see image above), use a sharp knife again, to score the edges of the dough where it is folded.

20

Turn the dough 90 degrees so the open seam is now horizontal to you and give the dough a quick roll, to give it a little bit of width.

21

Turn the dough 90 degrees again so the open seam is facing you again and begin to roll the dough. Roll the dough into a long even rectangle, flouring as needed, just as we did in step 15.

22

Dust off any excess flour, trim any rough edges, and perform another single fold. Wrap the dough and chill it in the fridge for 30 minutes.

23

After 30 minutes, we will repeat this rolling process another 4 times, so that we have done 6 single folds in total (or 6 ‘turns’). Score the edges of the dough, rotate it 90 degrees, roll it to give it some width, rotate it 90 degrees so the open seam is facing you, and roll it into a rectangle. Dust off the flour, rim the edges and perform a fold.

24

After you have finished your 4th turn, chill the dough for 30 minutes.

25

Once you have completed your 6th turn, chill the dough for an hour, and then the classic puff pastry is ready to use.

Inverse Puff Pastry - Détrempe/Dough
26

Add all of the ingredients into a medium bowl, and stir them together until there are no more dry ingredients.

27

Tip the mixture onto your work surface and knead it together for 1-2 minutes. Initially, it will be quite dry, but as you continue to work it, it will become smooth and gain some very slight elasticity.

28

As this is inverse puff pastry, the dough will go in the centre, and have the butter block wrapped around it. Therefore, roll the dough to the same size as the butter block we used for the classic puff pastry - 17.5cm/20cm (7x8”), by wrapping it in a tight square of parchment paper and using a rolling pin to roll it out. Place it in the fridge to chill for at leat 3 hours or ideally overnight.

Inverse Puff Pastry - Beurrage/Butter Block
29

Add the soft butter and flour to a stand mixer. Beat with a paddle attachment on a medium-low speed for 1-2 minutes, or until you have a smooth paste with no streaks of unincorporated butter.

30

Use a large sheet of parchment as a guide, and draw a rough rectangle, around 35cmx20cm. Flip this over and place the butter dough into the centre. Fold the edges of the parchment to form a rectangle and use tape to secure any loose edges in place. Flip it back over and use a rolling pin to roll it into a rectangle. Follow the guide in the video for clear instructions. Chill this for at least 3 hours.

Inverse Puff Pastry - Assembly
31

When you are ready to roll the dough, you need to pull the butter block out of the fridge and bring it to a temperature of around 9-10C (48-50F). If it gets too hot, it will be too soft to roll.

32

When the butter is close to temperature, pull the dogh block from the fridge, this needs to warm up to around 6-7C (42-44F).

33

Once at temperature, unwrap the butter block, and then place the dough block in the centre. Wrap the butter around the dough, sealing the seam with your fingers. Be quite generous with your flouring of the work surface and the dough here, or the butter will stick.

34

Cut the edges to release the tension and then with the seam horizontal to your body, roll the dough to give it a little width. Turn the dough 90 degrees, so the seam is now vertically in line with your body. Roll the dough, continuing to flour it as needed until it is a long rectangle, roughly 7.5mm thick (0.3”).

35

Trim off any wonky ends, and perform a single fold. At this point, the dough may feel quite soft/warm so it can be best to chill it in the fridge for 20 minutes before performing the second single fold. If you feel the dough is still cold, then go straight into the second fold.

36

Once you have completed the second fold, wrap the dough and chill it for 30 minutes in the fridge.

37

Then repeat the process as per the classic puff pastry - steps 23 onwards, until you have performed 6 total folds. Once you have completed 6 folds, chill the dough for at least an hour before using.

Viennese Puff Pastry - Détrempe/Dough
38

Add all the ingredients into a medium bowl and stir them together with a spatula. Then use your hands to gently squeeze it all together before lifting it onto your work surface.

39

Knead the dough by hand for about 5 minutes - it should feel more smooth and elastic at this point.

40

Use your hands to press the dough so that it is roughly 20cm/8” tall. Don’t worry about the width as we will roll it out later. Wrap the dough, and chill it for at least 3 hours or ideally overnight.

Viennese Puff Pastry - Beurrage/Butter Block
41

Repeat the exact same process as the classic puff pastry butter block (Step 5) and chill it for at least 3 hours.

Viennese Puff Pastry - Assembly
42

Once they have both chilled, remove the dough from the fridge, and use a rolling pin to roll it into a rectangle, roughly 35cm/20cm (7x8”). Wrap it up again, and chill it for 1 hour.

43

When the dough has nearly chilled, remove the butter block from the fridge so that it can come to a temperature of around 12C/54F.

44

Remove the dough from the fridge, and place the butter block in the centre and wrap this around the butter.

45

Continue to follow all the steps for the classic puff pastry - from step 8 onwards. Once you have completed 6 folds, chill the dough for at least an hour before using.

Puff Pastry 101