Bakeries give me joy. Just walking into a bakery and seeing those display cases full of pretty treats lined up so neatly feels simultaneously comforting and exciting. Know what I mean? French Hearts were always a bakery cookie for me. Growing up they would get packed in those brown paper bags and when we got home we would always split them. And then take seconds, thereby defeating the purpose of splitting them! These Easy French Hearts are my petite homage to that bakery favourite.
What do you need to make French Hearts?
If you are fancy you can always make your own laminated dough, but I am certainly not. However faking fancy is totally my thing so all I use are these three ingredients:
- pre rolled puff pastry sheets (or a block you roll out)
- a little orange zest to mix it up - you can use cinnamon, cardamom or even leave them plain!
- a teensy bit of salt
The Orange Zest is not traditional per se, but I love how it elevates the flavor of these French Hearts. Also can I just say how utterly GORGEOUS the smell is when you rub the zest into sugar? Almost makes you want to not wash your hands after. Don't worry friends though I did.
As a quick note these French Hearts are smaller than the classic bakery ones. I contemplated making large ones, but then imagining my girls tearing them in half to eat them and the subsequent cleaning was enough to make me change my mind!
How to Make Easy French Hearts
Step One: Rub the zest (if using) together in a bowl with the sugar, set aside.
Step Two: Unfurl the puff pastry sheet and scatter a layer of your sugar mix over top
Step Three: Mark a halfway line lightly and star rolling the puff pastry inwards from one edge towards the middle stopping at your halfway line. Repeat with the other side
Step Four: Slice into 1 cm slices, arrange on a cookie sheet
Step Five: Bake at 400 F for 5-6 on one side, then flip and bake for another 3-4 minutes until they look caramelly. Cool completely before eating.
They're also really pretty (if I do say so myself) and would make great hostess gifts or a very welcome addition to the usual smorgasbord of Christmas cookies.
Looking for more elegant treats? Try one of these!
Made these cookies? Rate them below by clicking the number of stars you want to give it and don't forget to tag me in your recreations on instagram @flourandspiceblog
EASY French Hearts
- 2 sheets ready rolled puff pastry (10 inches square roughly) - 450g thawed
- 1 tsp Orange Zest (optional) see notes for alternatives
- ¾ cup sugar
- ⅛ tsp salt
- Preheat the oven to 400 F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper
- Unroll your puff pastry sheet and scatter roughly ⅓ cup or an even layer of sugar over it
- Gently mark the halfway line on your sheet and roll one edge inwards, loosely coiling it in until you are close to that line. Repeat with the other side
- If your puff pastry is still cold and firm then start slicing it into 1 cm slices and arrange the cookies on your prepped sheet about an inch apart
- Scatter a little more sugar over top and bake them for 5-6 minutes then flip them over and bake for another 3-4 more until caramelly golden.
- Repeat until your dough is used up and cool completely before eating. Keep well in an air tight box for a week.