Appears in
Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

  • About

pastries a collective name for items produced by the skill of the pastry-cook or pâtissier, usually based on short, puff, or choux pastry (hence the name), Génoise sponge, or rich, yeast-leavened mixtures of the brioche type.

Exactly what is counted among pastries depends on the country concerned. In Britain, various yeast-leavened buns are included. In continental Europe, numerous strudels and nut confections fall in this category. meringues are considered pastries, and danish pastries form a special group. Many sweet pastries may be used for dessert, but most people think of them in connection with mid-morning coffee or afternoon tea, when a selection might be made from a range of different pastries offered in a café.