For a treat that has all the crunch and flavor of a cookie but feels a little more fancy, look no further than madeleines. These pretty shell-shaped desserts are a classic French pastry and are easy to customize, letting you create a wide variety of delicious flavors. Serve 'em at your next bridal shower, Mother's Day brunch or fun family event and you'll be sure to wow the crowd.
Béchamel sauce is one of the five mother sauces, and therefore a staple of French cuisine. You can often find it in chicken and fish dishes, or incorporated into lasagna or other baked pasta meals. And despite how fancy-schmancy it sounds, you don't need any crazy ingredients or tools to make it.
In the world of teeny, tiny treats, the French dessert known as petit fours reign supreme. These cute little squares of cake are wrapped in sweet fondant and usually topped with piped royal icing flowers. But if you want a more modern twist, this tutorial gives the sweets an update with brightly-colored coatings and a generous sprinkling of confetti.
Sweet or savory, plain or filled — when it comes to croissants, they're all delicious, all the time. That said, there's something special about a filled croissant. You can add that extra burst of flavor before proofing (so you put the filling in the dough before rolling, shaping, etc) or after baking (just slice and fill). Regardless of which you choose, it's likely you'll get a highly delicious result. Pick from any of the filling ideas below and get ready to tickle your taste buds.
Once you learn to bake croissants, you'll never use store-bought again. Sure, these flaky French pastries are a bit of a time commitment, but as professional baker Colette Christian demonstrates in her class Classic Croissants: Modern Techniques, the payoff is so, so worth it.
Some croissants are made from squares of dough, rather than triangles. Colette wraps things up with two square croissants: pain au chocolat (literally chocolate bread) using chocolate batons, and ham and cheese made with Gruyère and finished with dough "belts."