One of London’s oldest Michelin-starred restaurants, Pied à Terre celebrates its 30th Birthday this year. Since 1991, the restaurant has been owned by industry veteran David Moore, having received its first Michelin star within the first 13 months of being open. Since then, the restaurant has seen three recessions, a global pandemic, and six prime ministers, alongside a total evolution of the way we eat. Over the years, the kitchen has also hosted a string of talented chefs, including Tom Aikens (Muse, London), Shane Osborn (Arcane, Hong Kong), Marcus Eaves (Oblix, London), and the current Head Chef, Greek-born Asimakis Chaniotis. In the lead-up to the restaurant being able to re-open, Asimakis Chaniotis has shared his strawberry millefeuille recipe, which is also suited to any seasonal fruit. Always on the menu at Pied à Terre during late spring and early summer, the dish is an impressive, restaurant quality dessert.
On his strawberry millefeuille recipe, Asimakis Chaniotis says: “Millefeuille is one of my favourite desserts of all time. The crunch of the pastry with the smooth, rich filling – it’s pure decadence and lends itself well to any seasonal fruit. A strawberry millefeuille has always been on the menu at Pied à Terre in late spring/early summer, and with a little attention to detail, you can recreate it at home.”
- Piping bag
- 4 strawberries sliced
- 4 strawberries finely chopped
- Small lemon verbena leaves for garnishing
- 1 packet puff pastry
- Icing sugar
For the crème patisserie
- 250 ml milk
- 3 egg yolks
- 45 g sugar
- 30 g corn flour
- ½ vanilla pod seeds scraped
- 25 g cold butter diced
- Preheat your oven to 180C/Gas 4.
- Start with the pastry. Take half of it and roll it out to a thickness of 2mm, using icing sugar instead of flour, and place on a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper. Place another layer of paper on top of the pastry and then something heavy like another baking tray. This will prevent it puffing up too much. Bake for 15-20 minutes until it’s golden brown.
- Remove from the oven and immediately cut 3 rectangles, 6cm wide by 12cm long. It must be hot when you cut the pastry, otherwise it will break and crumble.
- Now make the crème patisserie. Add the milk and vanilla seeds into a pan and bring to the boil, then keep aside.
- Whisk the eggs and sugar vigorously until pale and fluffy, and then add the corn flour and fold in with a spatula. Slowly pour in hot milk whilst whisking and then put the mix back in the pan and cook on a very low heat till the mix is very thick, stirring every so often.
- Remove from the heat and mix into the cold butter. Allow to cool on the side before putting the fridge, covered with clingfilm, for an hour to set.
- When set, whip it for a minute and transfer to a piping bag.
- To serve, place one piece of puff pastry on your serving plate and pipe 2 lines of crème patisserie along it before placing a layer of strawberry slices. Repeat the process in reverse.
- For the ultimate presentation, place your chopped strawberries in a perfect circle around the dessert. Garnish the dish with a few tiny lemon verbena leaves.