Here is a larger photo of Russian Napoleon Cake.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Cake must chill before serving: 6 hours
Total Time: 8 hours, 30 minutes
Yield: 8-inch Russian Napoleon Cake
- Pastry Layers:
- 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) softened unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 stiffly beaten large egg whites
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 tablespoon vodka
- Pinch salt
- About 2 cups all-purpose flour
- Custard Filling:
- 6 cups milk
- 10 large egg yolks
- 1 large egg white
- 2 1/2 cups sugar
- 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 8 ounces unsalted butter
- To make the pastry layers: In a large bowl, beat together 2 ounces butter and 1 tablespoon sugar together until creamy. Fold in stiffly beaten egg whites, sour cream, vodka and salt. Gently fold in the flour a spoonful at a time until the dough is soft and pliable. Wrap in plastic and chill for 1 to 2 hours to make it easier to roll out.
- Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Butter a baking sheet pan and dust with flour. Divide the pastry dough into 16 pieces. Roll out each portion of dough directly on the prepared baking sheet into a very thin 8-inch circle (if you can get two circles of dough on one sheet all the better). Bake each layer until golden brown, about 6 to 10 minutes. If dough blisters as it cooks, pierce them with a fork. As each layer is cooked, remove from the sheet pan and set aside to cool on a wire rack. Repeat until all dough pieces have been baked.
- To make the custard filling: Pour the milk into a large saucepan and heat, but do not boil. In a large bowl, beat together the egg yolks, egg white and 2 1/2 cups sugar until creamy. Add 6 tablespoons flour and mix well. Pour this mixture into the saucepan of milk, stirring initially with a whisk until smooth and then with a wooden spoon constantly over low heat until thick and creamy. Add the vanilla and butter and stir until smooth. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. Stir frequently as the mixture cools.
- To assemble: Place one layer of the cooked dough in the bottom of an 8-inch springform pan and cover evenly with a layer of cooled custard filling. Continue to build up the cake in this way, layering the custard on top of the pastry, finishing with the 15th pastry layer. Crumble the remaining pastry layer on the top. Refrigerate for 5 to 6 hours.
- When ready to serve, run a butter knife around the edges of the cake, remove the springform ring and, using a cake lifter or two spatulas, carefully transfer to a serving platter. Use an electric knife to get nice, clean cuts.