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5 of our prettiest pâtisserie recipes

5 of our prettiest pâtisserie recipes

by Great British Chefs 24 October 2017

These delicate confections might look impossible to recreate at home, but with a little patience and effort any home cook can achieve pâtisserie perfection. Take a look at the recipes, put some time aside this weekend and get ready to wow your friends.

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The phrase ‘eat with your eyes’ must have first been coined in relation to pâtisserie. No other type of food can look quite so artistic, accomplished and delicious as a perfect profiterole, éclair or petit gateau. And while it takes many years of practice to be able to knock out hundreds of identical little pastries every day, they can be made at home, too – provided you don’t cut corners, have the right tools and are a bit of a perfectionist at heart.

These five recipes are among the prettiest on our whole site, and if you can pull them off you should be very proud. Even if you’re not the baking type, it’s interesting to see how some of the more complex processes result in such striking dishes. Happy baking!

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1. Raspberry and chocolate rose delice

Raspberry and chocolate are a tried and tested combination, but Graham Hornigold adds some lychee into his dessert as well for a touch of the exotic. The result is a stunning, romantic delice with a perfect quenelle of ice cream on the side. There are a whopping twenty-nine steps in this recipe, and many different elements to create (not to mention the need for a chocolate spray gun and silicone rose moulds), but if you’re a bit of a pâtisserie whizz and fancy a real challenge, give this a go.

2. Paris-Brest

For something a bit more traditional, you can’t go wrong with a Paris-Brest. Billowing dollops of praline-flavoured cream are sandwiched between two layers of pillowy choux pastry, with plenty of toasted almond croquant and icing sugar to finish it off. It’s the perfect example of why France is the home of great pâtisserie, combining light pastry, rich cream and crunchy nuts.

3. Lemon tart

This is an incredibly simple recipe but the finished product is so strikingly beautiful, it’ll look like you’ve spent hours baking it. The sweet pastry can be made and baked in advance, and the filling has only six ingredients. It’s a lemon tart done right – serve it alongside some seasonal berries and clotted cream and you’ve got a showstopping dessert on your hands. If the top doesn’t have that beautiful mottled effect after it comes out of the oven, give it a quick blast with a blowtorch.

4. Black Forest gâteau

This seventies gâteau is having a bit of a revival at the moment, thanks to chefs like Andy McLeish proving it can be just as refined and delicious as the daintiest French classics. A flourless cake flavoured with cocoa is filled with a Kirsch and milk chocolate mousse, before the whole thing is covered with a shimmering mirror glaze. The cherries on the outside let everyone know what they’re in for.

5. Crunchie macarons

Macarons always look fantastic when they’re done right, and so long as you follow Graham Hornigold’s recipe to the letter, yours will too. Choosing the classic flavours of a Crunchie bar – chocolate and honeycomb – the chewy almond and meringue shell is filled with a chocolate ganache and homemade pieces of chocolate-covered honeycomb. The result is a fun take on a British classic.

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