There is a town in France, called Pithivier, which produces these amazing desserts. Puff pastry rounds, stuffed with almond pastry cream and (traditionally) rum are as beautiful to eat as they are to look at.
The Pithivier pictured here is filled with the delicious frangipane and stuffed with apricot halves. A perfect combination! Pithiviers are lovely with their versatility – it does not matter what you stuff them with really, a creamy centre combined with the fluffy puff pastry crust produces a winner – sweet or savoury.
You can use store bought puff pastry for simplicity, but do try to splurge on a better quality brand. For those more adventurous in the kitchen – puff pastry tutorial is coming very soon!
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Pithivier Recipe Ingredients
- 1 package puff pastry
- 6 ounces (170 g) almond paste (marzipan**)
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons flour
- 3 ounces (85 g) butter, salted or unsalted, cubed, at room temperature
- 1 large egg, plus one egg white, at room temperature
- a few drops almond extract, optional
- 1 1/2 teaspoons rum, Calvados, or kirsch
- Can of apricots, or other fruit if desired
- Egg wash
How to Make Pithivier Recipe
1. Roll out your puff pastry until it is even thickness and cut out two large circles, using scalloped cutters if you have them, otherwise, use a knife to make a scalloped edge. Set Aside.
2. In a stand mixer, or by hand, beat the almond paste with the sugar and flour, until smooth. Some almond pastes may be drier than others. If yours is dry, just mix until the almond paste is finely-broken up.
3. Gradually beat in the butter, until smooth, then beat in the egg and the egg white, the almond extract, and the liquor.
4. Place a mound of your frangipane in the middle of your puff pastry round and pile on the fruit. The pithivier is meant to be thick in the middle with an at least one inch gap between the filling and the edges. Brush the edges with eggwash and place your second puff pastry round atop, sealing the edges. Use a knife to score the top of your pastry in a decorative pattern. Brush with egg wash.
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5. Bake the pithivier at 200 degrees F for about 12 minutes and then reduce to 190 degrees for another 30 minutes, until beautifully puffed and golden.
Optional: you can melt some apricot jam in a pot and brush a thin glaze over your pithivier when it has baked, or you can sift some icing sugar atop and put it back in the oven for a few minutes until sugar has melted.
The best way to eat these: make more than one and don’t share.
7. Cool slightly before serving, or serve at room temperature. Glaze, as desired
**You may use marzipan if you have nothing else, but almond paste is recommended for this recipe since it contains less sugar than marzipan (traditionally used for candy-making) and produces a more traditional pie.