Do you have a Valentine who you want to make something for? I don't necessarily mean a romantic partner. It could be that wonderful friend that you adore that just gets you, or that friend that is always there for you when you need them. Cast away any traditional notions, make them your valentine and make them this Wild Hearts Mille Feuille cake that is simple but gorgeously tasty!
I was inspired to make this by Israeli cake maker Adi Klinghofer. She makes cookie cakes decorated with flowers. I was actually caught a little off guard this month with Valentines Day. Not that it is a big deal in this household as we don't really celebrate it beyond eating something nice at home, but I wanted to come up with ideas for those that do. I simplified it all by using puffy pastry instead of cookies and once that was done, it really was the simplest but effective dessert I could think of but it didn't look it which is really the point of this all.
Speaking of alterative valentines, I have some great gals in my life. My girlfriends are really the ones that truly understand me and they are always there in case of rain or sunshine. A couple of weeks ago I was having a couple of days of "ungreatness" and Nina and Kristie were there with great advice and non judgement. It's like they could see into my soul and saw what part was damaged and they patched it right back up. Women are often put down for being overly expressive about how we feel but really, is that a bad thing? Bottling things up can't be good for you and a good talk with your girls is the best antidote to drama.
They're both entirely different personalities. Nina is hilarious, ditzy but very honest and logical. Kristie is all empathy, has the highest E.Q. of anyone I've ever met and we are like two sticks of dynamite together sparking each other off. You literally cannot stop us talking. They turned ungreatness into humour. And this Valentines Day, I'll be baking them something!
So tell me Dear Reader, do you have a non romantic Valentine you would bake something for? And what are your closest friends like? Will you be doing anything this Valentines Day?
DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE? Share your creations by tagging @notquitenigella on Instagram with the hashtag #notquitenigella
Wild Hearts Mille Feuille
An Original Recipe by Lorraine Elliott
Preparation time: 45 minutes plus waiting/cooling time
Cooking time: 25 minutes
- 2 sheets butter puff pastry
- 250g/8.83ozs. cream cheese
- 1 cup caster or superfine sugar
- A few drops raspberry essence
- Pink food colouring
- 2/3 cup cream
- Fruit, meringues, macarons and edible flowers to decorate
Step 1 - Lay out the sheets of puff pastry one on top of each other with parchment in between. Cut out two hearts in the puff pastry of identical size and shape. Then cut out a smaller heart in the centre. Place on a parchment lined tray and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Step 2 - Preheat oven to 220C/440F. Bake the hearts for 20-25 minutes until golden. Remove and cool completely.
Step 3 - Using a whipping attachment, whip the cream cheese, sugar, raspberry essence and colouring for 2 minutes until fluffy. Add the cream and start on low speed while it mixes in and then gradually increase to high speed whipping until it is voluminous and fluffy. Place in a piping bag with a #867 tip and pipe onto the hearts. Place in the fridge to firm up (about 30-45 minutes).
Step 4 - Decorate with cut strawberries, meringues and fruit on top.