The origins of Italy’s millefoglie dessert actually hails from France, where the dish is known as millefeuille, which is French for a thousand layers or leaves. That translation is actually a wonderful description for this layered dessert that is made with a flaky puff pastry, whether you’re in Italy, France, or a number of other countries. In Italy in particular, the dish can be made with either savory or sweet ingredients, and you’ll often find the dessert on the table for just about any celebration in Tuscany.
In addition to the puff pastry, the Italian-version of the dessert is typically layered with cream or jam, and then often dusted with confectioner’s sugar, crumbs, or sometimes even almonds. Alternatively, the topping may be iced. What makes the Italian version distinct from other countries is that is also often includes sponge cake for some of the layers as well.
Chef Deborah Corsi, who leads a cooking class during our fabulous cooking vacation Truly Tuscany: Wine Tasting Tour of Western Tuscany, has her own take on this dessert. She likes to top the crunchy layered dessert with homemade ice cream. You can put the seasonal fruit, such as strawberries, either inside the layers, on top as a garnish, or as edible decorations on the plate.
Learn more about our Tuscany cooking vacations, including:
- Living the Real Tuscan Dream
- A Classic Tuscan Table at Villa Casagrande
- Cooking and Vineyards of Southern Tuscany
By Liz Hall
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