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Cremeschnitte

The best cremeschnitte – two layers of puff pastry filled with heavenly creamy vanilla cream, this is a classic Romanian pastry recipe.

romanian cremeschnitte with crispy pastry on a platter

The creamiest cremeschnitte you can imagine! I have no words for this Romanian cremsnit, you definitely have to make this in order to see what I am talking about.

I can say it is creamy – the creamiest -but that word will still not be able to actually describe the feeling this vanilla cream leaves on your tongue, the sweetness and delicacy of the taste, that feeling of utter satisfaction you get when eating this cremsnit.

And recently, during our holiday in Croatia, I found out that the cremeschnitte is not only a super popular Romanian dessert, but it is very well-known and loved in Croatia and other Eastern European countries as well.

I have made lots and lots of cakes and pies or desserts during the past ten years, but I can tell you honestly, this is one of my favorites. Alongside this Raspberry and Lemon Cake and this Lemon Meringue Pie.

puff pastry cremeschnitte filled with custard close up
Cremeschitte - Romanian Cremsnit

Ingredients

eggs, puff pastry rolls, sugar, butter, milk and cornstarch in bowls

How to make cremeschnitte?

Vanilla custard:

  • Separate the eggs. Place the egg whites in a very clean bowl and make sure that the beaters of the electric mixer are very clean as well. If there is any trace of fat on them, you will not be able to beat the egg whites properly. Beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff. Slowly add the sugar and continue beating until the egg whites are stiff and glossy. (1)
  • Add the egg yolks one at a time. Carefully and slowly incorporate each egg yolk. (2)
  • Add the cornstarch, vanilla extract, and finely grated lemon zest and incorporate it with the help of a plastic spatula. (3)
  • In the meantime heat the milk well. Do that in a jug, it will be easier for you to pour the milk over the egg mixture. If you don’t have a heatproof jug, transfer the milk to a regular plastic or glass jug after heating it.
  • Very slowly pour the milk over the egg mixture. Keep the jug in the left hand if you are right-handed and the electric mixer in the right hand. Pour in a thin stream while mixing. (4)
  • As you can see I had to transfer the mixture in a larger bowl, the previous one was too small.
beaten egg whites mixed with egg yolks and corn starch in a blue mixing bowl
  • Transfer the egg-milk mixture back to the jug/pan where you heated the milk. Place on low heat and bring to a simmer while whisking continuously. It will be like making a pudding or custard, this is also the consistency you will have to reach. So keep whisking with a regular whisk (not an electric mixer) until you obtain a thick custard, it will not take long, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Make sure to reach the bottom and the walls of your pan with the whisk regularly to avoid the pudding catching at the bottom. You will not be able to see the custard in the pot very well at this point as there will be a lot of foam on top. But you will be able to feel it when it thickens, stirring will become less easy. The foam will disappear once you stir in the butter. (1)
  • Take the vanilla cream off the heat and add the cubed butter, 1 or 2 small pieces at a time, while whisking continuously to help them melt and incorporate into the pudding. (2)
  • Transfer to a large bowl and leave to cool for a while, the cream should be lukewarm when you spread it on the pastry. (3)
pot with custard and a whisk and custard in a bowl

Puff pastry:

  • While you wait for the vanilla filling to cool, preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celsius/ 430 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Bake each puff pastry sheet according to the packet’s instructions or until golden brown. It took me about 12 minutes but keep an eye on them and read the instructions. Leave to cool completely.
  • You can leave both pastry sheets as they are. But to make the slicing easier I prefer to cut one of the unbaked sheets into 15 rectangles before baking.
  • Otherwise, cut the cremeschnitte with an electric knife (Amazon affiliate link). This is the only thing I have to warn you about, the cremeschitte is a bit difficult to cut. The puff pastry on top of an immensely soft and creamy filling will make a mess when cutting.
unbaked and baked puff pastry sheets for cremsnit

Assemble:

  • Place one pastry sheet on a rectangular serving plate, press it gently if it is puffed up. Spread the custard evenly on top.
  • Place the second pastry sheet or the already cut pastry squares on top and press gently.
  • Refrigerate for one or two hours to allow the vanilla filling to set and sprinkle with icing sugar before serving.
filling baked puff pastry with vanilla custard to make cremsnit
Cremeschnitte Romanian Cremsnit

More Romanian pastry?

Berry Puff Pastry Cake – A simple cake recipe with puff pastry and lots of berries, this pastry cake looks impressive but is so easy to make. 

Layered Lemon Cake – A glorious layered lemon cake with lemon buttercream – Lamaita (Lemon Cake) or Alba ca Zapada (Snow White Cake).

Arlechin – Layered Cake with Jam Filling – Thin layers of cake filled with tangy plum and apricot jam – this is the Romanian cake Harlequin. 

Mucenici – Romanian Yeast Pastries – Soft and fluffy Moldavian Yeast Pastries soaked in syrup and topped with honey and walnuts.

Branzoaice – Romanian Sweet Cheese Pies – Or Poale-n brau: this is a Moldavian sweet cheese pie recipe made with cottage cheese and raisins.

crispy layers of puff pastry filled with vanilla custard
cremeschnitte piece sprinkled with icing sugar on a plate

Cremeschnitte Recipe

Yield: 15
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

The best cremeschnitte - two layers of puff pastry filled with heavenly creamy vanilla custard, this is a classic Romanian pastry recipe.

Ingredients

  • 5 eggs, separated
  • pinch of salt
  • 300 g / 10.6 oz/ 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 100 g/ 3.5 oz/ ¾ cup + 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1-2 teaspoons vanilla extract, to taste
  • zest of ½ organic lemon, optional
  • 1 liter/ 33.8 fl.oz/ 4 ¼ cups full-fat milk
  • 200 g/ 7 oz/ 3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 sheets of puff pastry, about 40x24 cm/ 16x10 inches (See note)

Instructions

Vanilla custard:

  1. Separate the eggs. Beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until stiff. Slowly add the sugar and continue beating until the egg whites are stiff and glossy.
  2. Add the egg yolks one at a time, incorporating each yolk carefully and slowly. Add the corn starch, vanilla extract, and finely grated lemon zest and incorporate it with the help of a plastic spatula.
  3. In the meantime heat the milk well. Do that in a jug, it will be easier for you to pour the milk over the egg mixture. Or transfer the milk to a jug after heating it.
  4. Very slowly pour the milk over the egg mixture. Keep the jug in the left hand if you are right-handed and the electric mixer in the right hand. Pour in a thin stream while mixing.
  5. Transfer the egg-milk mixture back to the jug/pan where you heated the milk, if large enough. If not use a large pot.
  6. Place on low heat and bring to a simmer while whisking continuously. It will be like making a pudding, this is also the consistency you will have to reach. So keep whisking (I do that with a regular whisk this time) until you get a thick pudding, it will not take long, about 3-4 minutes, depending on the size of the pot. Make sure to reach the bottom and the walls of your pan with the whisk regularly to avoid the custard catching at the bottom.
  7. You will not be able to see the custard in the pot very well at this point as there will be a lot of foam on top. But you will be able to feel it when it thickens, stirring will become less easy. The foam will disappear once you start stirring in the butter.
  8. Take off the heat and add the cubed butter, 1 or 2 small pieces at a time, while whisking continuously to help them melt and incorporate in the custard.
  9. Leave to cool for a while, the filling should be lukewarm when you spread it on the pastry.

Cremeschitte:

  1. In the meantime preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celsius/ 430 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. It is preferable to cut one of the pastry sheets into squares (15) before baking, it will be much easier to cut the whole cake into pieces once it is baked.
  3. Bake the puff pastry sheets one after another according to the packet's instructions or until golden brown. It took me about 12 minutes but keep an eye on them and read the instructions. Leave to cool completely.
  4. Place the uncut pastry sheet on a rectangular serving plate, press it down gently if too puffed up. Spread the vanilla custard evenly on top. Place the pastry squares on top and press gently.
  5. Refrigerate for one or two hours and sprinkle with icing sugar before serving.
  6. If you don't cut the squares before baking, cut the pieces with an electric knife.
  7. The cremsnit is best served on the day it is made, this way the pastry will still be crunchy. It is still delicious the next day, but the pastry will become rather soggy.

Notes

I used already rolled puff pastry sheets of the above mentioned size. They are to be found in the refrigerator section of the supermarket. If using frozen puff pastry, thaw it according to the package's instructions and roll it to the requested size.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 15 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 230Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 85mgSodium: 121mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 0gSugar: 19gProtein: 2g

Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

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Heather

Monday 16th of November 2020

I wrote this recipe on paper and missed the 3/4 c corn starch and only used 1 T... it wasn’t thickening up then I realized I missed the correct amount. I added the 3/4 c corn starch and hoped it would turn out! I had to strain out some clumps, and it ended up oozing out all over the place but was very delicious 😋

Adina

Monday 16th of November 2020

Hi Heather, I am happy you could save it. A little oozing is always involved, it is in the nature of the cake, but it is good!

Karla

Thursday 24th of September 2020

I’m so glad I found this recipe!! My dad’s family is fyy try I’m Transylvania and my grandma made this!

Eddie

Saturday 14th of November 2020

I agree with Kimberly Guerra and Rita that there is something wrong with the proportions. The custard mixture is much too runny and liquid with 4 1/4 (1Litre) of full fat milk. I followed everything in the instructions but instead of custard I got soup.

Adina

Thursday 24th of September 2020

I am glad you like the recipe, Karla. :)

Adina

Monday 10th of February 2020

Hi Rita, you are right, I had that one wrong. I wish I had someone to do proofreading, because no matter how much I check, mistakes can always slip through... Thank you for letting me know.

Kimberly Guerra

Monday 30th of March 2020

Hi Adina, you still haven't made the corresponding correction(from Rita) from your recipe. I would like to know as well what the measurements are to get the recipe right. Thanks. Would like to give it a test run before it's considered for Easter.

John

Tuesday 23rd of May 2017

This looks delicious! By the way, my wife's name is also Adina. She's also Romanian and her birthday is exactly one month before yours. :)

Adina

Wednesday 24th of May 2017

Thank you, John. Say hello to Adina from me. :) :)

Valentina | The Baking Fairy

Monday 10th of April 2017

This looks AMAZING! I love puff pastry and the combination with the vanilla cream sounds so yummy!

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