Home-made Puff Pastry

Home-made Puff Pastry

I am very excited about today’s recipe, as I will be showing you how to make puff pastry from scratch!  For a while I have been debating whether or not to publish it on a separate post or just add it to my Techniques page where I share other basic dough recipes.  The reason is that, even though I use puff pastry quite often in my cooking, I had never made it at home.  So it is no ordinary dough for me.  I have always been scared about it, as I have heard people saying it’s too hard and temperamental and that it takes so long that it just isn’t worth the effort.  When living in Italy, I was able to buy fantastic commercial puff pastry at the supermarket, so I never really needed to try and make my own.  Here in Australia things are a bit different.  I am just not satisfied with the regular shop puff pastry.  It doesn’t taste that great and it doesn’t even puff that much.  So weird.  Anyhow, that gave me the push I needed to make my own.  And I am so glad I did.  First of all, making puff pastry at home is not difficult at all.  It is much easier than making Croissants (though the method is quite similar).  It does require a bit of time though, so make it when you have a day to dedicate to it (or make it in 2 days).  Do not rush it or you will ruin it.  Also, do not make it on a hot summer day.  Remember you are layering dough with butter and butter melts.  If that happens, you will ruin your layers and you will not get “puff pastry”.  Other than that, the procedure is pretty straightforward and the result is AMAZING.  It is the best puff pastry I have ever eaten.  I made the full dose, cut it in blocks and froze it (the pastry you see in the pictures is already frozen)… so now whenever I need some puff pastry I can thaw my own. :-)  So, are you ready to see how to make puff pastry in your kitchen?  Let’s start and don;t forget to come back to see what I made with it!

Home-made Puff Pastry

Home-made Puff Pastry
Recipe type: Dough
Cuisine: French
Serves: makes about 2.4 kg – 5.3 lbs.
  • 705 gms – 25 oz. flour
  • 20 gms – 4 tsp salt
  • 440 gms – 15.5 oz. cold water
  • 1 kg – 2.2 lbs. butter
  • 295 gms – 10.5 oz. flour
  1. Put the flour and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the hook attachment. Put the machine on and slowly add the water.
  2. Knead the dough only until all the ingredients are just combined (do not overwork it as you do not want to develop the gluten in the flour).
  3. When ready, make it into a ball, then put it between two sheets of baking paper and flatten it into a rectangle.
  4. Let the dough rest in the fridge for 1 to 1 ½ hours.
  1. Put the cold butter between two sheets of baking paper and gently hit it with the rolling pin to make it more elastic.
  2. Put the butter and flour in the electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and knead until combined.
  3. Put this mixture between two sheets of baking paper and gently shape it into a rectangle about 1.25 cm – ½ inch thick.
  4. Put it in the fridge for 1 hour.
  1. Roll the detrampe dough in a long rectangular shape so that the length of the shaped butter mixture (beurrage) is equal to the width of the detrampe, and the width of the shaped butter mixture (beurrage) is half the length of the detrampe. (see the images)
  2. Position the beurrage in the middle of the detrampe as shown. Now give it a simple fold turn (which means folding the bottom half up on the butter and then folding the top half of the dough on top of the butter too). Press it down with your hands to seal the middle.
  3. Turn the dough so that the closed sides of the dough are on the left and right with the join vertical. Roll until you get a 1.25 cm – ½ inch thick rectangle. Make sure to roll mostly upwards and downwards (and only a little bit sidewards).
  4. Give the dough a simple 3 fold turn i.e. fold ⅓ on top of the central ⅓ and then the other ⅓ on top of it.
  5. Cover the dough with baking paper and put it in the fridge for 1 to 1.5 hours.
  6. Roll out the dough into a long rectangle again, making sure to keep the folded ends on your left and right. Make a 4 fold turn by folding the lower ¼ of dough on the lower middle ¼ of dough, the top ¼ of dough on the upper middle ¼ of dough and then by folding this one on top of the other to form ¼ of the rolled length, like in the photo.
  7. Cover it with baking paper and put the dough in the fridge for 1 to 1.5 hours.
  8. Now roll out the dough again into a long rectangle approximately the same size as before (always keeping the folded sides to your left and right), and make a simple 3 fold turn.
  9. Cover it with baking paper and put the dough in the fridge for 1 to 1.5 hours.
  10. Now roll out the dough again into a long rectangle approximately the same size as before (always keeping the folded sides to your left and right), and make a 4 fold turn like before.
  11. Flatten it to compact and refrigerate for at least 1 to 2 hours before using.
  12. Your puff pastry is now ready.
  13. The image below shows what your dough would look like if you cut it.
I usually cut the puff pastry into pieces, wrap them in cling wrap and freeze them for later use.

Home-made Puff Pastry

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  1. says

    I’ve been meaning to try this, but have hesitated…

    Thank you for the process pictures. They make it easier to understand how it all works.

    It really isn’t all that complicated, or time consuming, is it? As long as I have a day I can bop in and out of the kitchen, between other tasks. (And don’t have the oven on… LOL)

  2. says

    I have always made my own and I don’t find it hard at all. I learned from Rachel Allen Bakes on the Cooking Channel a long time ago. I do like using a good butter and that’s not Landoflakes. You need a good butter with a higher fat as in the European butters. So I say make puff pastry. It’s funny I just made puff pastry a couple of days ago. It’s easier than you think.

  3. says

    hi – what lovely inspiration I find on this site…

    Please can you assist in telling me how thick should the final layer be after it is rolled out. I am attempting millefeuilles.

    Thank you

  4. gina says

    Hey there I am making pyff pastry right now. I am not gonna use it until in two days though. Should I freeze it or leave it in the fridge? If I freeze (part if) it for later, would it be better to roll it out thinly rather than freezing an entire block? Or should I form croissants and freeze those? How long does it take to defrost? thanks so much!!

    • says

      If it’s warm where you live or your fridge doesn’t keep thing very cold, I would freeze it. You can try and keep it in the fridge for 3 hours… if the butter starts to melt, freeze it straight away. I keep it in blocks (about 2 inch thick),so it’s easier to store, but you can also roll it thinner if you prefer.


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