palmiers

If you watch the Food Network regularly, you’ve probably heard that the correct Italian pronunciation of bruschetta is “brusketta”. That’s all well and good, but most of us in the US pronounce it ‘brushetta’. And no matter how much you insist that it’s supposed to be brusketta, I’m going to consider you an insufferable know-it-all who needs to just go along with the flow. You can do as the Romans do when you’re in Rome; when you’re here, just say brushetta like the rest of us.

So how do you pronounce ‘palmiers’, anyway? The all-knowing Google says PALM-yeh, but I’m not sure if that’s the I’m-saying-it-the-French-way-even-though-we’re-not-in-France-and-no-one-here-talks-like-that way, or if Americans do actually say it like that. Maybe I don’t watch enough Food Network.

Fortunately, they’re easier to make than they are to figure out how to pronounce. All you do is roll out puff pastry, coat it in sugar and maybe spices, fold up the sides, slice, and bake. I actually did it before work, although I was late for work that day. But I’m late for work everyday, so I can’t blame the cookies.

My coworker described them as cinnamon rolls in cookie form, which is exactly what I was going for. Several people asked me what they were, to which I had no good answer. “Um…I don’t know how to pronounce it…some French word that means palm…” Someone please make me smarter. Palm-yay? Palm-yers?

One year ago: Pumpkin Cupcake Comparison
Two years ago: Pain Ordinaire

Printer Friendly Recipe
Palmiers (adapted from Ina Garten and About.com)

Makes about 30 cookies

1 cup sugar
pinch table salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon (optional; or other spices of your choice)
8 ounces puff pastry

1. Heat the oven to 425 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats. Mix the sugar, cinnamon, and salt.

2. Spread an even coating of the sugar mixture onto a pastry cloth or clean section of countertop. Coat more sugar over the top of the dough. Roll the dough out to a 15- by 12-inch rectangle, adding more sugar as necessary to prevent sticking. Starting at each long end, tightly roll the edges toward the center until they meet. Slice the dough into 3/8-inch cookies, transferring them to the prepared pans. Leave plenty of space between the cookies.

3. Bake one sheet at a time for 10-12 minutes, until the cookies puff and turn golden brown. Immediately (before the molten sugar hardens and glues the cookies to the pan!) transfer them to a wire rack to cool.

Comments

  1. That is one of my biggest pet peeves too – people who talk “normally” but pause to pronounce it “brusketta”. Seriously? Do people think you suddenly turned Italian?

  2. YES! The “brushetta” vs. “brusketta” thing drives me crazy. I completely agree with you. And I’m not totally sure on the pronunciation of this word, though I usually say it the way the French would (since I took French in high school).

  3. Those are gorgeous! I wish I had made them this weekend!

  4. palm-yay! My step-grandmother is French but I still tip-toe around saying “palmier” out loud. Love that these taste like cinnamon rolls.

  5. I have the same problem with gyros. I hate it when people make faces at me for not saying it like “euros” – but I always feel like I’ve screwed it up even when I try. Maybe I’ll just embrace my coarse American mispronunciations!

  6. What??? I thought it was brushetta! I mean, I thought I heard somebody Italian pronounce it brushetta once… Giada?? o_O

  7. bridget says:

    Wei-Wei – It wasn’t Giada! She’s insistent about “brusketta”.

  8. such pretty palmiers! i love the inner cinnamon layer. yum!

  9. I’m literally laughing out loud. I can’t help you with the pronunciation, but I can say that these look and sound delicious. They’re on my to-do list. :)

  10. Every American I’ve heard pronounces these as “pal-mee-yays” with a very subtle “l” sound, and the emphasis on the first and third syllables. The “mee” is really quick. So that’s how I do, and screw it if the French don’t agree with me. :-p

    In Spain, these are oftentimes dipped in chocolate. It’s just too much to handle– all that crunchy sugar cinnamon goodness covered in chocolate?! I prefer them just like you made them. :)

  11. wow, I’ve never heard ‘brusketta’, I would have no idea what they were talking about! For palmiers I would say ‘palm-yay’. They look delicious!

  12. irishjc says:

    I am cracking up at “insufferable know-it-all”. What is it about Italian foods that turn ordinary people into snots? I have a friend who’s as Irish as they come until it comes time to say “brusketta”, “mootzerell” (instead of plain old mozzerella) and “rigott” instead of ricotta. WTH?!

  13. No matter how you say it, those look dang tasty!

  14. these look so pretty!

  15. Ashley says:

    I love this! I too have the ‘mootzerell’ and ‘rigott’ friend and I used to work at a cafe where one Californian guy turned into Pepe le pew every time he ordered a “cwahhsahhn”…UGH!

  16. Here in India, we have a strong British left over influence, but conversely, are also being influenced by America too. So I never bother myself over pronunciation much, and not even spelling somethimes!!

    I love palmiers, they are sold in little packets here, love them!!

  17. Great post! I love to see French recipes recreated and Palmiers are so authentically French in their chicness and deliciousness

  18. Claudia says:

    Bridget I love how this ‘palmiers’ look. I can almost smell them.
    I am wondering if I can use phyllo dough instead of puff pastry. what do you recommend.?

  19. bridget says:

    Claudia – No, I don’t think phyllo would work. You need all those layers of solid butter, which expand in the oven, creating the puff – and a light, tender, buttery cookie.

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