Nut-mocha palmier hearts

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  • These little coffee, chocolate and nut-scented flaky biscuits are very easy and make perfect petits-fours

    Makes 24-32

    500g puff pastry, rolled out to 42 x 32cm 4 tbsp plain flour 75g toasted hazelnuts, chopped finely 4 tbsp cocoa, sieved 4 tbsp molasses or Barbados sugar
    3-4 tbsp hot strong espresso
    Icing sugar to decorate, if liked

    Step 1) Dust the rolled-out pastry with 2 tablespoons of the flour. Mix together the remaining flour, the hazelnuts and cocoa.

    Step 2) Stir the sugar into the hot coffee to make a thick syrup. Brush the coffee syrup all over the pastry, then sprinkle with the dry nut and cocoa mixture.

    Step 3) Pre-heat the oven to 200°C, Gas Mark 6. To create the palmier hearts, starting from one short edge, roll the pastry up tightly, stopping at the centre. Repeat from the other side to give a double spiral. Carefully turn this upside down and with a sharp knife cut into 5mm-thick slices. Arrange the palmiers on 2 lightly oiled oven trays. Chill for 20 minutes.

    Step 4) Bake the pastry, a tray at a time, towards the top of the oven for 20-22 minutes or until golden and crisp. Do not let them brown too much. Cool completely on wire racks and store in an airtight tin. Serve 3-4 per person, dusted with icing sugar, along with a tiny strong coffee, herbal tisane or iced liqueur as a dessert.

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