Introduction: Petit Fours
Pronounced 'petty for', not 'petite four'. Don't sound like an idiot like I did :).
Petit fours are elegant bite sized deserts. They are most often small layered cakes, soaked in simple syrup and covered with a fondant or a glaze.
Petit fours are a perfect fit for tea parties and bridal showers. A tower of petit fours could be a unique alternative to a wedding cake.
These step describe how to make raspberry almond petit fours coated with a white chocolate ganache.
Step 1: Ingredients
I baked a white almond wedding cake using this recipe.
I used store bought cream cheese frosting.
- 12 oz raspberries
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 3/4 cups water
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 bag white chocolate chips
- 2/3 cups heavy cream
NOTE: This ganache was still sticky after it dried. If you would prefer a hard coating, 1 package of melted candy coating squares with a couple tablespoons of shortening is a great alternative.
Step 2: Bake the Cakes
Bake two thin cakes in large pans, I used two 9x13 pans. The cakes will cook quickly, remove when they start to brown on top. Allow the cakes to cool sightly, then turn them out onto a flat surface.
Step 3: Make a Filling
Combine the raspberries, water and sugar. Bring to a boil, the reduce heat and simmer until the raspberries break down. Combine cornstarch with 3-4 tablespoons cold water, add the cornstarch mixture to the raspberries. Continue to simmer the mixture for a few more minutes, then remove from heat. The mixture will continue to thicken as it cools. Cool with an ice bath if desired.
Step 4: Assemble the Layers, Frost and Freeze
Spread the filling on the top of one of the cake. Place the second cake on top of the first. If they cakes are not level, level with a knife or a cake leveler. Frost the top cake. Smooth the frosting with wax paper. Place the cakes in the freezer with the wax paper in place. Freeze overnight, or until the cake is completely frozen.
Step 5: Cut Petit Fours
The petit fours can be cut into squares using a knife, or cut into shapes using small cookie cutters. If you cut them into squares, first trim the edges of the cake. Measure with a ruler and mark before cutting to ensure they are all the same size. Keep a bowl of water nearby, clean the cookie cutter or knife in between cuts.
Return the petit fours to the freezer.
Now is the time to perfect the little cakes. Remove the frozen petit fours from the freezer and smooth the sides brushing off any crumbs. Return to the freezer, freeze solid before adding the coating.
Step 6: Make the Ganache, Coat and Decorate
Heat the heavy cream in the microwave until it is almost boiling. Stir in the white chocolate chips, continue stirring until they have melted. If the ganache cools too much, heat it in the microwave for 20 seconds at a time. Add additional cream to the mixture as needed to create a thick, yet pourable consistency.
Coat and Decorate
Place the petit fours on a cooling rack with a plate or bowl beneath it. Spoon or ladle the ganache over the petit fours until they are covered. Repeat until all petit fours are covered, returning the ganache drippings from the plate to the bowl and reheating as needed. Decorate the petit fours while the ganache is still wet.
This was my first attempt to make petit fours. I will change a few things when I make them in the future.
- The ganache remained slightly sticky, I would have preferred a coating that totally dried. Candy coating would have worked better, but it is SO sweet.
- Some of the cakes leaned at a slight angle, I should have spent more time cutting them out.
- I couldhave used the excess cake to make cake balls.