Wait, before you pass any judgements, Mille Feuille is not just another fancy dessert, right out of a French patisserie. It is what the world knows as Napoleon (not the French king, but we’ll come to that). Etymologically speaking, Mille Feuille means a thousand layers. Quite true to its name, this pastry has multiple layers donned with all things sweet and tasty. The best part about it you ask? Well, you would find this pastry hitting all the right chords, all at once and still not be overwhelmed. 

By now, you would have established that Mille Feuille is a pastry. The question is, “What kind of pastry?” Airy and sweet, its also very flaky but really rich also and everything else you would dream a dessert to be. As for the origins, this decadent pastry is still in search of its rightful heir. 

The records claim that the first mention of a Mille Feuille was found in a 1651 French cookbook by François Pierre La Varenne. Remember we said the world calls it Napoleon? That’s not because of the French king Napoleon but inspired by the Italian city of Naples. All this while we were calling it a French dessert and turns out to be Italian, crazy right? However, all these claims remain contested to this date. 

The classic recipe follows puff pastry layers filled with cream but the English, who often refer to it as the custard slice or the vanilla slice, have tried their own versions of the French/Italian sweet meat. These days, you would find everything from caramel to chocolate shavings and all kinds of berries, layered in this gâteau de mille feuilles (cake of thousand leaves). 

Seems like a dessert has managed to strike the perfect balance which we’ve been trying to achieve in life for years! Also, in case you wish to try a Mille Feuille, here’s a delightful recipe.