The best cremeschnitte - two layers of puff pastry filled with heavenly creamy vanilla cream, this is a classic Romanian pastry recipe.
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.
How to make cremeschnitte?
- 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 be unable 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 to a larger bowl; the previous one was too small.
- 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)
- 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 cremeschnitte is a bit difficult to cut. The puff pastry on top of an immensely soft and creamy filling will make a mess when cutting.
- Place one pastry sheet on a rectangular serving plate, and 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.
More Romanian pastries
- 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.
Check out our web story for this recipe.
- 5 eggs separated
- pinch of salt
- 300 g granulated sugar 10.6 oz/ 1 ½ cups
- 100 g cornstarch 3.5 oz/ ¾ cup + 1 tablespoon
- 1-2 teaspoons vanilla extract to taste
- zest of ½ organic lemon optional
- 1 liter full-fat milk 33.8 fl.oz/ 4 ¼ cups
- 200 g unsalted butter 7 oz/ ¾ cup + 1 tablespoon
- 2 sheets of puff pastry about 40x24 cm/ 16x10 inches (See note)
- 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.
- Add the egg yolks one at a time, incorporating each yolk carefully and slowly. Next, add the corn starch, vanilla extract, and finely grated lemon zest and combine it with the help of a plastic spatula.
- Heat the milk: In the meantime, heat the milk well. Do that in a jug; it will be easier to pour the milk over the egg mixture. Or transfer the milk to a jug after heating it.
- Mix: 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.
- Transfer the egg-milk mixture back to the jug/pan where you heated the milk, if large enough. If not use a large pot.
- Cook custard: 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 regularly reach the bottom and the walls of your pan with the whisk to avoid the custard 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 start stirring in the butter.
- Add butter: 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.
- Leave to cool for a while; the filling should be lukewarm when you spread it on the pastry.
- In the meantime, preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celsius/ 430 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Cut pastry: 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.
- 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.
- Fill: 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.
- Refrigerate for one or two hours and sprinkle with icing sugar before serving.
- Cut: If you didn't cut the squares before baking, cut the pieces with an electric knife.
- Serve: 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.
Angie@Angie's Recipes says
That vanilla cream filling looks sensational!
Swoon 🙂 luscious cream filling and golden puff pastry, sounds like heaven and perfect for easter. Happy Birthday, Adina! Hope your special day is filled with lots of delicious food.
Happy birthday!!! I'm glad I caught that...hope you're having a very happy day! : )
And this pie...seriously, no words at all! So ridiculously wonderful looking. I love it!
and cake is amazing 🙂 I love easy recipes. I imagine that (if I am really do not have time) I can replace this cream with "store" pudding 🙂 Thank you for sharing!
Oh my goodness!! This looks and sounds divine!! Such simple ingredients, yet such an impressive dessert!! Happy birthday again and have fun in Arhus!!!
this looks AMAZING! that filling alone would be a fine dessert, but to surround it with such crunchy goodness goes above and beyond! bravo. 🙂
I love using ready-made puff pastry because I could never really made a good one on my own ! This looks amazing! Btw, Happy belated birthday to you 🙂
Happy birthday!!! xx
I think my husband would love this, he does like cremsnit. I might surprise him. 🙂
Kimberly @ The Daring Gourmet says
I love desserts like this, you did such a beautiful job! I think puff pastry is one of my ultimate weaknesses and served with that wonderful creamy filling is just perfect.
Evi @ greenevi says
Oh, we used to have this in Hungary too! I absolutely hated it from a confectionery, they always tasted so artificial, but the homemade version was always my favourite <3 Yours look incredible too!
Valentina | The Baking Fairy says
This looks AMAZING! I love puff pastry and the combination with the vanilla cream sounds so yummy!
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. 🙂
Thank you, John. Say hello to Adina from me. 🙂 🙂
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 says
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.
Hi Kimberly. Of course I did. It says 4 1/4 cups milk now, and it has been like that for a while. Or do you mean something else? I've just checked the other conversions, they are fine, however, I always recommend using a kitchen scale for best results.
I’m so glad I found this recipe!! My dad’s family is fyy try I’m Transylvania and my grandma made this!
I am glad you like the recipe, Karla. 🙂
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.
Hi Eddie. It must be something else, I've made this so many times and I've always used exactly this amount of milk. The custard becomes really thick in a matter of minutes. All I can think of is for you to weigh the corn starch on a digital scale, cup measuring is treacherous and having the right amount of corn starch here is vital.
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 ?
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!
So i just finished making this recipe to the t. I found that whilst cooking and whisking the cornstarch started to clump up. But i used the electric mixer and fixed that and then added the butter, not sure why that happened. Beautiful recipe! Thankyou
I am glad to hear it worked out fine, Bella. Happy holidays!
Hi Adina your recipe looks delicious! I’ve done it ??
Ceau Mihaela. I am glad you like it!
My grandmother and mother used to make this, but we made our own puff pastry. Needless to say, I haven't made it in a long time, because it takes a lot of time to make puff pastry. When you precut the puff pastry sheet before baking, do you keep the pieces close together or separate them during baking.
Yes, homemade puff pastry is nice but it's a lot of work. I cut the pastry on the baking sheet and leave it there. You can see it in the pictures.
It would have been nice to have the recipe have the able to change to US measurements.
The measurements are all there, although I always recommend the scale.