December 11, 2010

Veneziane alla crema paradiso

It’s been quite a challenging week for me, as many of you know. And to be honest I have not completely recovered from my fever/cold/cough/any other thing that kids have passed on me this time. It’s very rare for me to get really sick, and even more rare are the times I get high fever. But when I do, I become unbearable. It really bothers me not to be able to function normally, to go around constantly with a tissue in my hand to blow my nose, to not feel like or have the strength to do things as usual. When I’m sick I’m miserable (and a big pain in the butt!).

I’m glad, sooo glad, the weekend is here. I will finally have a real chance to completely recover.  My recovery process started this morning, with some good baking (and subsequent snack hehe ). Veneziane are a simple Italian pastry I had on my to-bake-soon list for a long time. Don’t be fooled by the appearance. They are not beignets. They are more like little brioche. But still, the dough does not taste like brioche at all! The recipe is adapted from the one I found at a great Italian blog (dolci a go go). I did not want to use my usual pastry cream recipe, though, so I went for a slightly different cream. I found the recipe a long time ago in a little booklet of my mom. There it was called crema paradiso, which translates to paradise cream. I tasted like heaven indeed. I’m quite happy for having tried this new cream recipe. It’s a keeper. And my recovery…well it sure started with the right foot!

Veneziane alla crema paradiso

For the veneziane
Yields 9-10 small veneziane

125 gr (4.5 oz or 1 cup) all-purpose flour
125 g (4.5 oz or a little less than one cup) bread flour
7 gr (1 ½ tsp) instant dry yeast
25 gr (2 tbsp) sugar
1 pinch salt
25 ml (0.85 fl oz) olive oil
1 egg
125 ml (4.22 fl oz) warm milk
5 ml (1 tsp) vanilla extract
confectioners’ sugar

For the cream
Yields enough cream to fill all the veneziane

150 ml (5.07 fl oz) milk
90 ml (3 fl oz) cream
60 ml (2 fl oz) honey
3 egg yolks
50 gr (1.78 oz or ¼ cup) sugar

For the dough:
In a big bowl or on a floured surface, make a well with the flour, the yeast, the sugar, and the salt.  Pour in the center the egg, the oil and the vanilla and lightly mix with a fork or the fingertips.

Slowly add the milk and keep mixing until the milk is well incorporated in the dough. The dough will be pretty sticky but don’t get discouraged and don’t add too much flour. Keep kneading for a few minutes, until all the ingredients are well incorporated and the dough becomes smooth (and yes, it will still be pretty sticky).

Put the dough in a lightly greased bowl and let it rest in a warm place for about an hour and a half or until the dough is double in bulk.

In the meantime, prepare the cream, so that you have enough time to let it cool down before using it.

In a small pot, pour the milk, the cream, and the honey and warm up the mixture on low flame until it lightly boils.

In the meantime, in a medium bowl, mix the egg yolks and the sugar until you obtain a smooth cream. Pour on top of it a few tablespoons of the boiled milk mixture and stir. Then, pour the rest of the milk mixture.

Put the whole cream back into a pot and let cook on a very low flame, stirring continuously, for a few minutes, this time without letting it boil.

The cream will be ready when it will have thickened just a little bit, enough to leave a light veil on the spoon.

At that point, take the cream off the stove, cover it with plastic wrap and let it cool down completely before using it (by the way, this cream can be served as a dessert in itself, served in small cups with a cookie or two!)


When the dough is double in bulk, divide it into 9-10 small balls and put them on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Cover them and let them rest again in a warm place until double in bulk.

Preheat the oven to 350F degrees.

When the little balls have doubled in bulk, cut a little cross on the top with the scissors and spread a tiny little bit of cream on it.

Bake for about 15 minutes, or until they start to get gold. Let them cool on a cooling rack.

Fill a pastry bag with the cream and fill the veneziane with it (I used a pretty small tip, #2 because I had previously strained the cream. If you do not strain the cream I suggest you use a bigger tip otherwise the cream will get stuck. However, be careful because the cream is still pretty liquid and with a big tip you risk it will be running all out the little brioches and you will make a mess. I did so once and I spilled cream everywhere, but after all….I’m very clumsy with the pastry bag!)

Sprinkle the veneziane with confectioners’ sugar before serving.

Have a sweet day!


  1. Sara, your photos are beautiful! I want to do photos like that!! Just gorgeous.
    When scanning titles I understood the "alla crema paradiso" and figured that Veneziane was something I definitely would like! I wasn't wrong. Hope you are feeling better soon, I'm not a good sick person either...

  2. Sara
    what an incredible treat you have made for us! those lovely pastries look delicious, and your pastry cream does sound like paradise!
    I do hope you are feeling better my friend, make sure you get some rest and drink plenty of fluids

  3. These are gorgeous, Sara. Little pillows of heaven! I'd love to taste that crema paradiso, sounds wonderful.

  4. This is sure to make anyone feel better! I hope you are feeling well with each day. I would love to try these, they looks absolutely scrumptious.

  5. Hi Sara! So sorry to hear you are not feeling well. Nothing like finally feeling well enough to cook yourself the right thing! Your photos are beautiful - and I love the honey in the cream... just delicious! - Feel better soon! - Megan

  6. Any recipe that has PARADISE on it's title is a sure winner... am sure with such a gorgeous looking bun your recovery will be much quicker!

  7. This sounds so perfectly simple and delicious to eat, although a process to make! But a fun and well worth it process none the less..:)

  8. I hope you're feeling better, Sara! Those gorgeous treats must've helped :-) Kate

  9. Glad you are feeling better! I know exactly how you feel when your sick - I don't handle it well myself. Those pastries are beautiful. Great pictures!

  10. Feel better soon, Sara! I am in pastry love! ;)

  11. Hope you are feeling better, I hate being sick. I love the idea of these, they do like like little brioches. They are almost too cute to eat. Have a great rest of the weekend.

  12. What a great path to recovery:) Make something to take you to paradise, these sound amazing, thanks for sharing!

  13. That's an interesting recipe. Where I grew up, a veneziana is a different kind of pastry, sort of like a cinnamon roll (but not as sweet). Your veneziane look very nice!

  14. I'm glad to hear you are starting to feel better! It's never any fun to be sick.

    What a fun little treat. They DO look like beignets, so I can't wait to try them out and see how they vary!

  15. I love filled pastries and would love to try these too! They look delicious~
    Get well soon!

  16. I'm glad to hear that you are at least starting to recover from being sick. I'm like you, I rarely get sick, but when I do it's really bad and I become a terror to be around. I hope these pastries made you feel better though, I know I would have felt worlds better after eating them!

  17. glad you're feeling better sweetie.. thank you for sharing this lovely treat, they looks so yummy!

  18. I hope you are feeling better and that this cold you have is a distant memory soon so you're at your best for the holidays.

    These Veneziane alla creme paradiso look like scrumptions cream puff lovelies...I'd luv to give it a try with a warm cup of tea or coffee.

    I enjoy that you share Italian desserts and introduce new things. :)

  19. How are you feeling now? I don't have a fever, but I have Dudette's cold and am miserable. I'm even more miserable after seeing your glorious creations here. They're absolutely amazing. Then I think of my flat puffs and I get sad. :(

    But, this is your shining creation, my friend. If being sick brings out this creativity in you; it works! (Though it's probably not worth it.)

  20. Now that you mention it, they do look like beignets. I'd much rather have these since they're baked. These look absolutely sinful but I would't feel guilty at all about eating them!

    Hope you had a restful weekend, Sara. :-)

  21. Sara-these are gorgeous and look delicious. It reminds me of Italy, I hope you feel better:)

  22. Sorry to hear that you are not feeling well. I think that those of us who don't get sick often are sometimes the ones that are the most difficult. We just aren't used to it. I must say that eating some of these would definitely put a smile on my face.

  23. This is cool, I have to try this.

  24. Sorry to hear you're still not feeling well :( I've been feeling a little funky myself lately. Think my body is trying to fight something off. The Veneziane alla creme paradiso look like paradise. It's right up my alley. I bet they're wonderful. Bookmarking this special recipe. Thanks!

  25. I never had these babies before... must try them out this festive season.

  26. Thank you everybody for stopping by. I am definitely feeling better and if these veneziane made me feel better, your comments contributed a lot too :)
    @Kim: I'm glad you like the photos. I have been working a lot on my photography lately and I so hope it will pay off in the long run
    @The Chef: I'm feeling better...right on time for you know what :)
    @Megan: the honey in the cream...I think that is the secret in this recipe. I really loved it. It makes it smooth and sweet but you can't isolate the honey flavor too much.
    @Trissa: thanks for stopping by! I feel honored to receive the visit of a blog that I (often silently) adore!
    @Simona: I also knew another type of veneziane, more similar to the ones you know apparently, but I have never tried them so I did not know how they were supposed to be and instead I tried the ones I knew. I will have to look for the other veneziane's recipe
    @Cristina:I'm glad you like seeing desserts you didn't know. From time to time I like to present something really Italian that just did not get the international attention that other desserts got. Nevertheless, these other desserts are usually soooo good.
    @Christiane: you and dudette need a "sweet" cure. Forget about the croquenbouche. Make youself a good cake! I hope you girls will feel better soon!
    @Trish: I am a believer that our body knows better than we do :) Getting sick is his way to tell us "can u please give me a break?" Taking care of ourselves (in many ways, even with a dessert) is always helpful. I hope you feel better too :)

  27. I hope you feel better soon Sara!
    Your photos of the pastries are just beyond gorgeous! I've never had these before but I wouldn't mind eating a dozen of them. They look amazing and the cream sounds delicious with the honey in it! :)

  28. Altro che bignè, si vede che sono brioches, mitiche le veneziane, ti sono venute benissimo Sara! Imma poi è sempre una garanzia!

  29. Great recipe idea. I have to try these ones, because I like filled pastry.

  30. @Tania: davvero...Imma e' una garanzia, per questo ho scelto di seguire la sua ricetta come prima volta. Devo rifarle presto!
    @Thorsten and @Letizia Golosa: thanks for stopping by. I really need to make filled pastries more often....I love them!


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.