Tea Time Petit Fours
Definition: [PEH-tee fohr; puh-tee FOOR] 1. Any of various bite-size
iced and elaborately decorated cakes. Petits fours can be made with
any flavor cake, though white and chocolate are the most common. 2.
The French also use this term to describe small, fancy cookies.
Source: The New Food Lover's Companion, Second Edition, by Sharon
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
1/4 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup milk
3 egg whites
For Fruit Glaze:
12 oz. apricot or raspberry preserves (or heated jelly may be used
3 tbsp. water
9 cups confectioners' sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
Food coloring, (optional)
Tiny edible sugar flowers and/or leaves, for decorating tops of
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C). Grease and lightly flour a
9-inch (23cm) square baking pan.
In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, shortening and sugar. Beat
in the vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; add to
creamed mixture alternately with milk. In a small mixing bowl, beat
egg whites until soft peaks form; gently fold into batter.
Pour batter into prepared baking pan and bake at 350 degrees F (180
C) for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center
comes out clean. Remove cake from oven and let cool in pan for 10
minutes. Turn cake out onto a plate or cooling rack; then chill cake
in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
Remove cake from refrigerator. Cut a thin slice off each side of
chilled cake. Cut cake into 1-1/4-inch (3.175 cm) squares. Place
squares 1/2 inch (1.27 cm) apart on a cooling rack over a 15 x 10 x
1-inch (38cmX25cmX2.5cm) pan. Apply fruit glaze (See Fruit Glaze
Preparation Below)) evenly over tops and sides of cake squares,
allowing excess to drip off. Let dry. Repeat if necessary to
thoroughly coat squares. Let glaze dry completely.
For Preparing The Fruit Glaze:
In a medium size saucepan, heat preserves with the 3 tbsp. water on
low heat. Drizzle or spread a thin layer of heated preserves over
cooled tops and sides of petit fours before icing. (If using jelly,
you do not need to add water to it, just heat jelly in saucepan on
low heat and spread over cooled tops and sides of petit fours).
To Prepare Icing:
Combine all icing ingredients in the top of a double boiler. Heat
over boiling water to lukewarm. Pour icing over tops and sides of
petit fours. Once they are set, they should be coated with icing
again. After icing hardens, decorate tops of each petit four with a
tiny edible sugar flower and/or leaf.
Makes 2 1/2 dozen petit fours.
Storage of Petit Fours
Petits Fours may be made up to 24 hours in advance. Let the icing
(or if using a fondant frosting) dry completely before storing in an
airtight container. Refrigerate petit fours if they contain
perishable fillings and icings, such as dairy products or fresh
fruit or berries. The fruit preserves or jelly used in the filling
of these petit fours can go bad after 2 or 3 days because of the
moisture from the wet fruit filling, so storing them in an airtight
container at room temperature for more than 2 days is not advised.
1). You can separate the icing, once it's made, into small bowls,
and tint each with a different food coloring, adding color until you
achieve the desired shade.
2). Icing colors that look nice for petit fours are: White, Pale
Yellow, Pale Pink, Pale Blue, Pale Green or Lavender.
3). You may also drizzle melted white or dark chocolate over tops
and sides of petit fours instead of using the white or tinted icing.
4). Another idea is to sandwich two of the cake squares together
with the heated preserves or jelly glaze; then pour icing over the
tops and sides of squares, then decorate when icing has hardened