When it comes to sweet treats, the French surely know what they’re doing. Desserts and pastries are practically embedded in the country’s DNA because no matter which part of France you find yourself in, there’s a superb pastry that is waiting for you. The French seem to master the art of pastry. From delicate macarons to warm and flaky croissants, name the pastry and the French can create it and turn into not just a piece of bread but also a piece of art. And we are here to give you a list of delectable, beautiful, and sumptuous French pastries you need to try.
This meringue-based cookie with ground nuts has been receiving a lot of attention these past few years. We can’t blame the people for hyping over this fancy, Instagram worthy pastel colored pastry with scrumptious flavor. This confection was created by Catherine De Medici and its main ingredients are egg white, icing sugar, almond powder, food coloring, granulated sugar, and ground almonds and it is presented with a buttercream or ganache filling that is sandwiched between two meringue cookies. Macarons have a variety of flavors from chocolate, raspberry to foie grass and matcha.
2. Opera Cake
This luxurious cake is made with thin layers of almond sponge cake that is soaked in coffee syrup, layered with chocolate ganache and coffee buttercream and covered with rich chocolate glaze. It is a square or rectangle shaped cake that is sliced into bar-shaped pieces when served.
The croissant is probably one of the most well-known French pastry. But this buttery, flaky, crescent-shaped, viennoiserie pastry originated in Austria where it was known as the kipferl. The recipe for this delicious pastry was adopted by the French where it became popular.
This traditional shell-like shaped small sponge cakes. They are baked in pans that have a shell-shaped mold. It is made of flour, eggs, sugar, almonds and other nuts. After it’s baked, the cakes are coated in jam or desiccated coconut. It can also be dipped in chocolate or topped with a glace cherry.
5. Chocolate Mousse
This sweet treat is made with whipped cream and whipped egg whites and it is mostly flavored with caramel, chocolate, coffee, pureed fruits, and different herbs like mint and vanilla. In some mousse mixture, the egg yolk is often mixed into the melted chocolate to give the dessert a richer feel.
6. Tarte Tatin
Tarte Tatin is the French version of the pineapple upside-down cake but instead of pineapples, they used caramelized apples. Tarte Tatin got its name after Hotel Tatin after it has been served as the hotel’s signature dish.
7. St. Honore
St. Honore is a French pastry that named after the French patron saint of bakers and pastry chefs, It is made of puff pastry, cream puffs, choux pastry, caramelized sugar, whipped cream, and chiboust cream. The St. Honore was created in 1847 at the Chiboust bakery in Rue Saint-Honore, Paris.
8. Crème Brulee
Also known as Trinity cream and burnt cream, Crème Brulee is a custard base pastry that is topped with hardened caramelized sugar. It is usually served chilled and the custard base is flavored with vanilla but it can also have other different flavorings.
Also known as sweet baguette, Éclair is a thin long oblong shaped pastry that is made with choux dough which is filled with pastry cream and topped with icing. The traditional icing of an éclair is chocolate icing but creative bakers made different icing variations like caramel, coffee, and black currant.
10. Kouign Amann
Kouign Amann or butter cake is a round multi-layered pastry which is made with croissant dough, butter, and sugar that is folded and refolded then baked in rounds. The pastry is baked slowly at a low temperature to allow the dough puffs to create many layers. The sugar caramelizes in the process and forms a crispy crust.
11. Mille Feuille
Also known as Napoleon, MilleFeuille is a slightly crackly thin layer of pastry that are layered with pastry cream. The top layer can be dusted with confectioners’ sugar, cocoa or glazed with icing or fondant that is typically marbled to create an elegant look.
12. Paris Brest
This round pastry was created by Louis Durand in 1910 to commemorate the Paris-Brest-Paris bicycle race which explains the pastry’s wheel like design. Paris Brest is made of choux pastry that is split in the middle and sandwiched with rich cream.
Baguettes might be the most well-known French pastry in the world. it is commonly made with lean dough, water, yeast, and salt. There is a law in France that states that a baguette must weigh 250 grams. Baguettes are part of the French traditional breakfast and they are often spread with butter or jam and dunked in bowls of hot chocolate or coffee.
This small French pastry that is made with egg yolk, vanilla, flour, butter, cane sugar and flavored with rum and vanilla. It has a delectable custard center and caramelized crust. It originated in Bordeaux and it is widely available in patisseries in France.
15. Bugnes Lyonnaises
This traditional sweet and crispy pasty is made out of thin, twisted ribbon-shaped dough and sprinkled with powdered sugar. They are commonly eaten during carnivals and on Fat Thursday.
These are the mouthwatering French pastries you need to try. Forget about that diet and have a cheat day by trying at least one of these yummy treats. We promise you won’t regret it.