Brie en Croute

Laminated Doughs / Classic Puff Pastry

Laminated means layers.  Puff pastry consists of two components. A de trempe and a beurrage. Made separately, they are combined prior to the turning stages. The dough is now conditioned with rolls and turns, rests and repeats. The end results are flaky, tender and delicious baked goods. In France a pound of flour must have a minimum of 5 ounces of butter to be called classic puff pastry. We use tant pour tant, which means equal values; one pound of flour to one pound of butter. Many chefs test bake a small piece of puff dough to see how well it will perform.

de trempe

1 lb gold medal unbleached flour

1 t salt

2 T crisco

1 cup cold water

2 drops lemon juice or vinegar

1) Flour, salt and crisco in mixing bowl.  Attach paddle and stir to cut in the crisco, about two minutes.

2) Add water by distributing it around the bowl.  Don’t overwork dough.

3) Final mix in the bowl with your hand .

4) Remove the dough.  Round it and rest it.  Cut 1/2″ criss-cross on the top of the dough as it relaxes more.  Drape it with plastic wrap and rest 30 minutes room temperature and then 30 minutes in the refrigerator.


16 oz butter

3 to 4 oz gold medal unbleached flour

1) Place butter into a clean mixing bowl.  Attach paddle.

2) Cut with a small amount of flour until blended at high speed.

3) Shape 1″ high x 5″ square.  Pat down with a little flour.

4) Wrap with 2 sheets of deli paper and store in the refrigerator until ready to combine with detrempe. About 30 minutes to a hour.

Remove the detrempe from the refrigerator and roll out, starting from the center, outward in four directions…making a square. Place the beurrage into the square on a diagonal. Bring each corner up to cover the beurrage, meeting in the middle.

Walk out the dough, over the two ends of the dough that meet in the middle, like an envelope. Knuckle by pressing down and roll out 10″ wide x 14″ to 16″ long.  Brush off excess flour and fold inward into thirds, resting the last part with the edges to your right. Walk out in the direction of the dough and mark with one finger imprint. Wrap with plastic wrap, loosely and rest in the fridge about 30 minutes. Repeat this process next time double turn and rest. The process is one single one double turn x3 for a total of six turns. Remember to work quickly. Handle the dough when it is cold and use your refrigerator to control the temperature of the dough.  Proof the dough or you will end up cooking the bottom.

Roll out 1/8″ thickness. Cut with sharp knife or cutter, shape, egg wash, cool in fridge and bake according to recipe.  375º to 400º about 25 minutes and a little more for drying. A hot oven will give you the explosion of steam to make it puff. Dock or vent accordingly.

Variations: Shell filled with sweet or savory recipe, or bouchere a band filled with pastry cream and fruit, vented and baked, turnovers filled with fruit and fleuron which is a classic French garnish served with fish, to name a few.

Freezes nicely.

** Brie En Croute **

Wrap rounded brie cheese inside puff pastry and seal using a little water to hold and bind bottom edges together. Braid 12″ to 18″ cord and decorated the mound. Egg wash and bake in hot oven @ 375º to 400º about 25 minutes or until a deep golden brown.


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