A mainstay bakery treat, palmiers are almost as easy to make as they are to buy. Talk about bang for your buck! Two ingredients (plus a pinch of salt) gets you just-about-to-shatter buttery dough layered with deeply flavored caramelized sugar.
While I affiliate the shape of these goodies with butterflies (les pappilons), palmier is French for palm tree and so named because of their resemblance to a palm leaf. Growing up, I knew these treats as orejas (ears–or elephant ears when they are over sized).
After a some trial and error I learned that the trick to these is to be really brave and let them bake for much longer than you might be comfortable.
It will take some time in the oven for the sugar to begin to caramalize. But when it does, do not be afraid to go dark. Eating an anemic palmier is worse than not having one at all.
Want some other things to make with puff pastry?
How about my favorite appetizer: brie en croute.
And then there are Jesuits, delicious no matter your religious persuasion.
Or super easy, cheater morning buns.
1 pound of puff pastry makes about 32 palmiers
- 16ish ounces puff or rough puff pastry
- 1 C or so of granulated sugar
- Pinch of kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Sprinkle half of the sugar on a work surface.
- Cover surface with your pastry dough (if you are using store-bought, unfold dough first so that it is one big sheet).
- Cover the sheet of pastry with remaining sugar and your pinch of salt.
- Roll the dough out to a 13X13 inch square, pressing the sugar into the dough on both sides.
- Fold-in each side so that it is halfway toward the mid-point of the dough. Fold again (see photos). This will give you that pretty palm/butterfly shape and creates six layers of dough.
- If your kitchen is warm, you may want to put the resulting log into the fridge for a few minutes. It cuts more precisely when cold. When you are ready to cut, cut the log into 1/4-1/2 inch slices.
- Arrange palmiers onto a baking sheet lined with parchment.
- Bake for 6-7 minutes. Pull pan from the oven and flip each palmier.
- Finish baking until golden brown–7-10 minutes.
- Allow to cool. When cool, cookies will be crisp. Stored in an airtight container, they’ll keep their crispness.