Pasteis De Nata

Pasteis De Nata

It seems like an eternity ago that we were in Lisbon and we were eating pasteis. As soon as we arrived, we were put in the bath, since fresh pasteis were waiting for us in our accommodation. From the first bite, we were won over by these little cakes. The super crispy dough, the melting texture of the cream, the flavors… The height of indulgence!
During the few days we spent in Lisbon and Porto, we ate it almost all day long. As an accompaniment to a small coffee, it’s too good. I fell in love with the city of Lisbon and its pasteis.
The first pasteis we tasted were those from Montegaria. We stayed with this brand throughout our stay. Of course, we also tasted the famous pasteis de Belem, the best it seems. It is ultimately quite complicated to compare the two. They are totally different, especially in terms of the dough. Those from Belem are surprisingly crispy. The dough is very thin, almost looks like filo sheets. On the other hand, it is imperative to taste them immediately, because they soften very quickly. Those from Montegaria are in my opinion more fragrant and creamier. And the dough stays crispy longer. Above all, the main advantage of the latter is that they are present in different places in Lisbon, and also in Porto.

Of course, I promised myself to make these delicacies again on my return, and I made sure to stop by the Pollux department store to buy real mussels. Since then, I have prepared several times, which allowed me to do several tests and give you the recipe that so far satisfies me the most.
When I make a recipe at home, I always try to find the best compromise between authenticity and ease of execution. This is what I need to really monopolize a recipe and make it regularly with pleasure. Otherwise, I quickly fall into the ease of buying the whole thing. So, my recipe must be better than the one you find everywhere around my house, while remaining easy to make.
The problem with the pasteis that you buy around here, whether frozen or in certain bakery outlets, is the paste. Each time, we have puff pastry which takes up too much space in the preparation compared to the cream, and which really lacks crunch. It’s good, but far from being similar to real pasteis. So I tried the recipe for Bernard. Undoubtedly, it changes everything. It is a puff pastry made from margarine. And yes, in Portugal, it seems that you don’t find a lot of butter. And their margarine is salty. I tell you the grimace when I tasted a sandwich with my morning coffee. I really didn’t expect that and it’s not very famous for us used to soft butter. But, in the dough of the pasteis, it works wonders! This dough is very easy to make. Much more than a puff pastry with butter. Indeed, it is not necessary to make cool passages. It almost spreads out on its own.

With the quantities of dough, we make between 25 and 30 pasteis. As I have 12 moulds, I kept half of them in the freezer, which allows me to make another batch very quickly. I will definitely make this dough again. I also plan to test it in other preparations. Maybe salty pasteis…
The cream is finally quite similar to the one I had already prepared in the past. It’s not as smooth and creamy as the ones we tasted there, but it’s very satisfying. The principle of the cream is on the one hand to make a flavored syrup, and on the other a kind of béchamel. Then add egg yolks. No Portuguese pastries without egg yolks.
Everything is then baked in a very hot oven.

And for the service, we do not forget the cinnamon and icing sugar.

Pasteis De Nata:

Paste paste:

300g T55 flour

1 pinch of salt

140ml water

190 g margarine for cooking at room temperature (Astra type)

Put the flour, salt and water in the bowl of the robot. Mix the 2 first with a spoon, then start kneading for about 6 minutes at medium speed.

Film and refrigerate for 1 hour.

At the end of this time, lightly flour the work surface and roll out the dough so as to have a fairly long and not very wide rectangle. To do this, always pass the roller in the same direction, starting from you and going upwards.

Cut the margarine so that you see a square. Arrange it in the center of the dough and spread it slightly with a knife so as to have something regular.

Fold the top, then the bottom of the rectangle over the margarine. Consolidate the edges so that all the margarine is well enclosed.

Now, we make turns as for a puff pastry.

Turn the dough 1/4 turn, then spread it out again so as to have the same large rectangle as before.

Fold the top towards the center, then the bottom over it.

Turn the dough 1/4 turn, then roll it out and fold it in the same way.

Turn the dough 1/4 turn, then spread it thinly, this time in both directions to have a long rectangle, but also wide.

Pass a slightly damp brush over the surface, then roll very gently to have a very tight sausage.

The paste is then ready to be used.

Reserve half of the dough well protected in the freezer for next time.

Cut 12 sections of 1.5 cm in the kept part, then place them in the greased moulds.

With the 2 inches, spread the dough so as to cover the entire surface of the mold. These are the different steps that you see in the photo below. You should get the same.

Book cool.

Preparation of pasteis de nata in Lisbon

Cream:

200g sugar

125g water

1 cinnamon stick

1 peel of lemon zest

1 peel of orange zest

30g flour

20 g powdered milk

250g water

4 egg yolks

Put the sugar, water, cinnamon and zest in a saucepan.

Bring to a boil and boil for 1 minute.

To book.

Mix flour and milk powder in a saucepan.

Add water.

Put on the fire and let thicken while stirring.

Add the syrup, little by little while mixing.

Let cool.

Preheat the oven to 250°C.

Remove the zest and cinnamon from the cooled cream. Add egg yolks. to mix together.

Take the dough out of the fridge and pour the cream over it.

Bake for approximately 15 minutes. The pasteis must be golden brown.

Leave to cool for about 30 minutes and enjoy immediately, sprinkled with cinnamon and icing sugar.

Pasteis De Nata

To finish: the margarine to take is the one you find in large blocks in a golden paper, not the one you put on sandwiches in the morning. It is found under the Astra brand or as a supermarket brand.


You can choose not to make your dough and take commercial puff pastry. I really don’t recommend it because it puffs up too much and isn’t as crispy. In this case, roll out the roll more thinly, moisten it slightly then roll it into a very tight sausage.


Choose organic citrus fruits. I like to use lemon and orange. You can take only one of the 2. For the zest, peel it off, being careful not to leave a blank. A peel is just a piece, not the whole zest.


Choose Ceylon cinnamon, much better than the other.


You can easily order molds online. Nice size, they can also be used to make small cakes or tarts.
I grease them with a grease can.

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