Sweet Spiced Palmiers

Can we all take a moment to agree that store bought puff pastry is one of the best baking shortcuts you can have as a home cook?  It’s my secret weapon for both appetizers and desserts, and it’s the main reason why these lovely sweetly spiced palmiers are so dang easy to make.

Sweet Spiced Palmiers

Palmiers is French for palm trees which is what these sweet little pastries are supposed to resemble when they’re baked.  They’re essentially folds of puff pastry layered with sugar cooked until they’ve reached caramelized perfection.

The thing that takes these sweet spiced palmiers above the rest is the addition of ground cinnamon and fresh nutmeg.  It gives just a hint of holiday spice to the classic French pastry.  They can be rolled and cut in advance then stored in the fridge right up until you’re ready to bake them, which makes them perfect for holiday entertaining.

Sweet Spiced Palmiers

Sweet Spiced Palmiers

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 sheets puff pastry, cold but defrosted
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ whole nutmeg seed, freshly grated
  • ⅛ tsp kosher salt
  • Sea salt to garnish

To start making the sweet spiced palmiers, preheat the oven to 425 and prepare the spiced sugar mixture.  You want to make sure your puff pastry is defrosted completely but is still cold.  The best way to do this is to remove it from the freezer and let it defrost in the refrigerator overnight.

Cinnamon Sticks, Fresh Nutmeg, and Puff Pastry - Sweet Spiced Palmiers

Combine the sugar, ground cinnamon, fresh nutmeg, and kosher salt is a small bowl and mix to combine.  Next sprinkle flour onto a clean, dry surface and roll out 1 of the puff pastry sheets.  Roll the puff pastry into a square measuring 12×12 inches approximately.

Puff Pastry and Sugar - Sweet Spiced Palmiers

Sprinkle half of the spiced sugar mixture over top of the puff pastry square and press the mixture firmly into the pastry dough.

For the spices in this recipe, I tried both dried and fresh grated cinnamon and nutmeg.  I didn’t notice any difference with the fresh grated cinnamon stick versus ground cinnamon, so I opted for ground cinnamon in the recipe for ease.  However, with the nutmeg I did notice a difference between freshly grated and already ground.  Nutmeg is easy to grate if you have a zester or cheese grater, and I found it gave a fresher spicier overall flavor.

Sugar and Spices for Sweet Spiced Palmiers

After pressing the sugar mixture into the puff pastry fold the sides of the puff pastry square towards the center so that they go halfway to the middle.  Then fold each of those sides halfway towards the center again.  Finally, fold each of those sides together like you’re closing a book.

If the folding sounds too complicated, an alternative way is to roll each end equally towards the center of the puff pastry.  Either way, the spiced palmiers will taste wonderful so it’s a win, win.

How to Roll Sweet Spiced Palmiers

Repeat with the second piece of puff pastry and the remaining spiced sugar mixture.

Next, cut the palmier logs into 1/2 to 1 inch slices and arrange on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.  Be careful not to overcrowd the palmiers as they will expand when baked.  Alternatively, you could cover the log in plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 1 day before baking then slice and bake as directed below.

How to Roll Sweet Spiced Palmiers

Bake at 425 for 7-8 minutes or until the sugar on the bottom has become bubbly and caramelized.  Use a spatula to flip the palmiers and bake on the other side for an additional 3-4 minutes.

Normally when baking with puff pastry you brush an egg wash or melted butter on the outside to create a nice golden brown crust.  This isn’t necessary with these spiced palmiers because the sugar melts and creates and golden caramelized exterior on its own.

Sweet Spiced Palmiers

Remove from the oven and sprinkle with flaky sea salt.  Let cool slightly before serving.  These sweet spiced plamiers are served best slightly warm as the sugar is just starting to harden.  They’re also great at room temperature, but just a little extra crunchy.

   Bon appétit!

Sweet Spiced Palmiers

A lovely treat, these sweet spiced palmiers are warm, flaky, and caramelized with just the slightest hint of holiday spice 

Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 22 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 sheets puff pastry cold but defrosted
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ whole nutmeg seed freshly grated
  • tsp kosher salt
  • Sea salt to garnish

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 and prepare the spiced sugar mixture by mixing sugar, ground cinnamon, fresh nutmeg, and kosher salt is a small bowl

  2. Sprinkle flour onto a clean, dry surface and roll out 1 of the puff pastry sheets. Roll the puff pastry into a square measuring 12x12 inches approximately.

  3. Sprinkle half of the spiced sugar mixture over top of the puff pastry square and press the mixture firmly into the pastry dough.
  4. After pressing the sugar mixture into the puff pastry fold the sides of the puff pastry square towards the center so that they go halfway to the middle. Then fold each of those sides halfway towards the center again. Finally, fold each of those sides together like you're closing a book.

  5. Repeat with the second sheet of puff pastry

  6. Cut the logs into 1/2 to 1 inch slices and arrange on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Be careful not to overcrowd the palmiers as they will expand when baked.

  7. Bake at 425 for 7-8 minutes or until the sugar on the bottom has become bubbly and caramelized. Use a spatula to flip the palmiers and bake on the other side for an additional 3-4 minutes.
  8. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with flaky sea salt. Let cool slightly before serving.



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