Raspberry millefeuilles. Photograph: Harry Weir
- Makes: 6
- Cooking Time: 10 mins
- Course: Dessert
- Cuisine: French
- FOR THE PUFF PASTRY
- (Makes 600g, so freeze the rest)
- 225g strong white flour
- ½tsp salt
- 225g unsalted butter, chilled
- 100ml-110ml ice-cold water
- ½tsp lemon juice
- FOR THE ORANGE VANILLA CREAM
- 150ml cream
- 80g icing sugar, sieved
- ½ vanilla pod, seeds scraped out
- Zest of 1 orange
- TO FINISH
- 250g raspberries
- Icing sugar, toasted flaked almonds
To make the puff pastry, first set aside 25g of butter and cut it into small dice.
Sieve the flour and salt together. Rub in the 25g of butter. Make a well in the centre. Add the cold water and lemon juice, bring the mixture together and knead it firmly for one minute, to bind it to a smooth doughy texture. Wrap it in cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Put the remaining 200g butter between two sheets of cling film and bash it with a rolling pin, to give it a pliable consistency. (This is important, as if the butter is too soft it will melt and ooze out, but if it is too hard it will break through the paste when being rolled out.) Roll it into a square.
Roll the chilled dough into a thin rectangle on a well-floured work surface. It should be 30cm long and wider than the flattened slab of butter. (Straighten the edges as you roll, so the pastry rises evenly.) Remove the wrapping from the butter and place it across the middle. Fold the dough over the butter from the sides and from both the top and bottom ends, so that the butter is fully enclosed in a square parcel.
Keeping the surface well floured to prevent sticking, roll the dough into a long, thin oblong, then fold the bottom end up towards the middle and the top third down over it, to form three layers. Give the dough a clockwise half-turn, so the fold is positioned on the left. Repeat the rolling and folding process a second time, then wrap and chill for a further 15 minutes. Chill the pastry after each set of two rolls and folds. Continue rolling and folding this way until the pastry has had six turns in all and no longer appears streaked with butter. If it does, roll it out another time.
Preheat your oven to 200 Celsius.
Cut the pastry in half. Roll out half of the puff pastry to a thickness of 3mm and cut abou 12 even strips (about 13cm by 4cm). Freeze the remaining dough for use another time, or cut more strips.
Place the strips of pastry on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Bake in the preheated oven for about 10 minutes, or until the pastry is risen and golden. Remove from the oven, and transfer the baked pastries to a wire rack to cool.
For the orange vanilla cream, whip the cream and sugar together, then fold in the vanilla seeds and orange zest.
Choose the six best strips for the tops and set them aside. Use a piping bag filled with vanilla cream to pipe a thin line of cream down the centre of the remaining pastry strips. Alternate raspberries and beads of cream along the sides. Lay the second strip on top (using the flatter side as the top, if you prefer).
To serve, dust with icing sugar and scatter with flaked almonds. Serve immediately.