Tarte Soleil is a French-inspired pull-apart puff pastry, and since my kids are half French, it’s perfect for the Sun portion of our space unit study. The sun pastry might look complicated, but it’s actually easy enough for my kids to make.
Usually, the tarte soleil is quite large, about 12 inches in diameter. However, since my kids are making it, I didn’t want them to handle such a big pastry. So we made a mini version that is much easier for their little hands!
How to Make a Tarte Soleil with Your Kids
- 1 sheet of frozen puff pastry, thawed but still cold
- Jam of your choice (we used raspberry jam)
- Cream cheese
- 1 egg
- Baking mat or parchment paper
- Baking sheet
- Rolling pin
- A bowl that is about 6 inches in diameter
- Small drinking glass
1. Thaw 1 puffy pastry sheet according to package directions. It takes about 40 minutes to thaw, so plan ahead of time.
2. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
3. Line the baking sheet with a baking mat (or parchment paper).
4. Unfold one of the pastry sheets on the baking mat.
5. Roll the pastry sheet out until it’s big enough to fit two 6 inch bowls.
6. Place the bowl on top of the puff pastry and cut around it with a knife. This will create a circle for your base. Repeat to create another circle. Save the rest of the puff pastry for mini pinwheel pastries if desired.
7. Spread cream cheese and jam on one of the circles.
8. Place the other puff pastry circle on top. Press down gently around the edges.
9. Place a small drinking glass upside down in the middle. Press down but careful not to cut the pastry. Remove the glass.
10. Cut away from the middle circle to create “rays” of pastry emanating from the center. You can first cut in quarters, then decide how many “rays” you would like and cut the quarters to half or thirds or more. How many “rays” you should have should depend on how big your middle circle is.
11. Place one finger close to the center of each ray (near the edge of the middle circle) and gently twist each ray once. Make sure you always twist in the same direction.
12. Beat the egg and brush the pastry with the egg wash.
13. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown.
14. Cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes.
15. Tear off rays of the “Sun” by twisting them.
16. Bon appetite!
Tip: If the pastry gets too soft to spread the filling or cut at any point, you can just place it in the freezer for a few minutes. The pastry should firm up and be easier to handle.
Doesn’t the tarte soleil look like the Sun? If you search for tarte soleil recipes, most call for twisting the rays a few times. Since we are making smaller ones here, the strands are not long enough to twist more than once. However, I think twisting it once actually makes the pastry look the most like the Sun!
Since the puff pastry box came with two sheets, we ended up making two tarte soleils. My daughter made this one herself, and besides a couple of twists that went the wrong way, she did a great job!
The sun pastry was absolutely delicious! Since we don’t eat sweets often, I let my kids polish off most of the tarte soleils for dessert. They were in heaven!
I hope you and your kids were able to make this tarte soleil together. It’s such a delicious dessert to keep our tummies full for space week!
For more fun in the sun, check out: