WTSIM…Berried Treasure

Doesn’t this photo just say it all. Summer on a plate. I defy anyone not to dive in when a platter of these makes its appearance at any summer party. I can barely believe that these were an afterthought. They were the leftovers from a batch of puff pastry I made destined for savoury tarts for lunch. And while the pastry takes a little time to make (if not very much effort) it is also possible to buy good quality puff pastry from the freezer section of supermarkets. Or specialist bakers such as Baker&Spice in London. Make sure you go for the all butter kind.

Once you have your puff pastry, made or bought, these little temptations are simplicity itself to make, leaving you looking like you’ve just popped out to a fabulous Parisian bakery for the edible edification of your guests, even if you are in the middle of the West Country.

Or maybe not. Their official French name is Feuilletees, a version of the more well known mille-feuille (or thousand leaves). They are generally little individual sized portions of rectangles of puff pastry, brushed with an egg glaze and baked at 220*C for 12 -15 minutes, then split in half and filled with sweetened cream and fresh fruit. So far so good. But had these truly come from a French Patisserie I have no doubt they would all be perfectly uniform and would not dare to have a single one of their thousand layers out of place.

Mine, on the other hand, reflect their maker, far from perfect, wildly undisciplined, wandering off at a tangent (that’s what happens when you use scraps of puff pastry), and filled to bursting with sunshine, joie-de-vivre, a touch of tart sweetness, and a little bit of whimsy. The sunshine and happiness come from the fact that there is actually some sunshine today. Hooray! The tart sweetness comes from handpicked berries from the kitchen garden, and the whimsy (without which I would be lost) is the fragrant promise of fresh mint, the smell, rather than the taste infusing the whole.

Actually, they make me think of deck chairs and floaty dresses, glasses of Pimms and Sunday afternoon cricket. Not French at all then. But very very Somerset. There are some times when it is well worth being British.

This is my entry for Jeanne, Johannna and Andrew’s WTSIM… event. This month it is hosted by Jeanne and the theme is Berried Treasure. For once my only problem with entering an event was choosing what to post about. I can’t wait for the roundup as it s my considered opinion that you can never have to many things to make with berries.

15 Responses to “WTSIM…Berried Treasure”

  1. on 01 Jul 2008 at 1:45 pm Ann

    Really beautiful and tempting-looking!

  2. on 02 Jul 2008 at 1:39 am courtney

    Oh those look so lovely.

  3. on 02 Jul 2008 at 6:23 am Elra

    Love summer berries and I still haven’t got the time to make my own puff pastry as you suggested! One day, I will!
    Your feuilletees looks so good!

  4. on 02 Jul 2008 at 1:28 pm Bellini Valli

    We are smack in the middle of strawberry season…wouldn’t these be perfect to spoil my daughter tomorrow night:D

  5. on 02 Jul 2008 at 3:38 pm Colleen

    Im so thrilled I have found you again……………..looong hiatus, pc & internet problems but here I am once more. Your blog is still beautiful!! Its so good to be back. Hugs from me xx

  6. on 02 Jul 2008 at 4:49 pm Jeni

    Oh, yes, summer indeed! I want those right now with my coffee for breakfast.

  7. on 02 Jul 2008 at 7:17 pm african vanielje

    Ann, Courtney, Elra thank you. I had every intention of making them for the kids only…but guess what…

    I love that you still want to spoil your daughter Val. I hope Kody and I are still as close as you two once she’s grown up.

    Hi Colleen. You aren’t the only one who’s been a bit scarce, but it is nice to have you back. It is nice for me to be back too. Huge hugs back to CT.

    Jeni, the only bad thing is these don’t keep overnight. You have to double enjoy them while you can! Have a good day and enjoy your coffee!

  8. on 02 Jul 2008 at 9:01 pm kit

    These looks scrumptious – just right for showing off berries to perfection.

    I knew we hadn’t quite sampled the English summer scene fully yet – not one Pimms has passed my lips and the floaty summer dresses have been overlayed by warm tops and underlaid by leggings – on the girls at least! And we keep saying what lovely weather we are having, because it has hardly rained at all since we’ve been here! The girls are discovering an English fashion whimsy of their own, with fancy wellies combined with leggings short skirts, bright long-sleeved tops and patterned rain jackets – topped off with hair braided South African style…

  9. on 03 Jul 2008 at 3:02 am andrea

    These look like the picture of summer. If my boys saw them, there would not be a single crumb left. :-)

  10. on 05 Jul 2008 at 5:16 pm Ivonne

    I, quite frankly, think they’re gorgeous! And I love that they’re filled to bursting … that’s the only way to eat. The berries are so pretty!

  11. on 08 Jul 2008 at 8:07 pm Ivy

    I am really jealous seeing recipes with berries as the only berries we can get in Athens are strawberries and have enjoyed them a lot since March. Simple recipes can become the best when using ingredients like puff pastry, cream and berries. I am drooling over your pictures.

  12. on 09 Jul 2008 at 12:36 pm Jeanne

    Oh Inge, these look divine! I have made something very similar with cherries and a kirsh-cream which was fab – love the freshness of these. If I hadn’t been away for Henley this year, I would have insisted that you made these for the blogger picnic!

    Thanks for taking part in this month’s WTSIM :)

  13. on 15 Jul 2008 at 3:17 am Dragon

    Summer on a plate indeed! This looks delicious. Well done.

  14. on 16 Jul 2008 at 3:12 am Jude

    Wow looks delicious. The best of summer on a plate for sure.

  15. on 16 Jul 2008 at 6:22 pm african vanielje

    Thank you all. I think it’s time for another round as the kids have just been stripping the raspberry canes. I guess loads of rain and intermittent sunshine is at least good for some things.

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