Making tompouce this week has been sort of akin to the whole Brexit process. In that, I thought it was going to go okay, and then I made them and they didn’t turn out anything like I was hoping.
Tompouce are a Dutch version of mille-feuille with pink icing on top, or orange icing if it’s King’s Day. I’ve never made mille-feuille or anything similar before, despite having consumed a lot of them. The first time I made these I didn’t press the air out of the puff pastry as it was cooking so I ended up with weird, pillowy pastry that didn’t really work. And then the pastry cream went wrong. So then I started again, kept a close eye on my pastry, taking it out and pressing down on it every 5 minutes, and luckily my trusty custard watchman, Oscar, had returned to carefully watch over my custard. All in all the second attempt was much more successful, even though they still look a bit crap in comparison to the real deal. Let’s call them ‘rustic’.
It’s quite difficult to write anything about Brexit at the moment without it becoming immediately outdated. I was originally writing this on Monday, with no clue what additional nonsense would have happened by the time I posted. She cancelled the vote. Of course she cancelled the vote. Then came the no confidence vote, which is currently going on and I’m trying to finish writing this before she resigns or something else massive happens. It’s an ongoing drama, hard to look away.
But there’s still very little certainty about what the outcome of this thing is going to be, meanwhile the pound has dropped massively and there are some delightful humans who are taking this opportunity to make tons of money from how fragile our economy is. Excellent.
1 tbsp vanilla essence
2 egg yolks
2 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp cornflour
1 sheet puff pastry
4 tbsp icing sugar
2 tsp milk
1 drop red food colouring
- Warm the milk in a pan, then add vanilla essence. In a bowl, mix the egg yolks with the sugar and cornflour until pale yellow and creamy.
- Take 4 tbsp of warm milk and stir it into the egg yolk mix. Carefully stir it back into the warm milk into the pan, put it back on a low heat and stir until it is thick. Take off the heat and cover, to avoid forming a skin when it cools down. Leave to cool completely.
- Heat the oven to 200C. Line two baking sheets with paper. Cut the puff pastry sheet in 4 equal rectangular sections and place them on the baking sheet. Prick holes into the pastry with a fork, cover with another piece of baking paper and then place another baking tray on top. This will stop the puff pastry rising too much. Bake for about 15 mins, checking every 5 mins to gently press any air out of the pastry where it is rising too much. Bake until golden brown, then remove from oven, cut each rectangle into two and leave to cool completely.
- Stir icing sugar with the milk and the red food colouring into a thick icing.
Take the bottom part of one of the puff pastries and spread the vanilla cream on it. Top it with its corresponding half of the pastry. When all four are done, carefully spread the pink icing on top.