Tips & Techniques

Unlock the secrets to the perfect pastry with our tips and techniques.

How to Prepare

Here’s a simple guide to prepare you for working with our dough:

Thaw to Perfection


Sheets and Squares
Remove only the desired number of dough pieces from the box. Thaw at room temperature until pieces are easily bendable (5-10 minutes). It’s then ready for makeup into whatever pastry you choose. Or, if using the entire box, thaw the box overnight in a cooler (35°-40°F) for a minimum of 12 hours.

Bulk Dough
Remove dough from box, but leave on plastic overwrap. The preferred method is to thaw overnight in the cooler (35°-40°F) for a minimum of 12 hours. Or, thaw at room temperature for 4-5 hours. With either method, always leave on plastic overwrap to prevent the dough surface from forming a crust.

Dough should be completely thawed before sheeting. If taken directly from the cooler, allow bulk dough to bench rest 30-45 minutes before sheeting. This will bring the dough to an ideal temperature range of 40°-55°F. Above 60°F, dough will be sticky and difficult to sheet. Below 30°F, roll-in fat will be brittle and may damage dough layers.

rolling pastry

Essential Tools

Have these essential tools on hand:

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  • A pizza cutter and/or knife for precise shaping
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  • A pastry brush to add the perfect finishing touch
  • Consider using pizza ‘dockers’ to prevent your puff pastry from puffing up too much


Sheets and Squares
Sheeting is not required for sheets and squares. Some slight stretching of dough may be required during makeup steps depending on the particular item.

Bulk Dough

  • Cut one 15 lb. piece of dough in half. Work with one 7 ½ lb. piece at a time.
  • Lightly dust the bench and dough. Use a heavy rolling pin or mechanical sheeter.
  • Begin sheeting dough lengthwise, always from the middle towards the edges.
  • Next, sheet at right angles, again working from the middle to the edges.
  • Continue alternating directions to produce a uniform thickness of ⅛″.
  • Lift dough from the table and allow it to relax.
  • Rest dough for 5 minutes.
  • Brush off excess flour and cut dough into desired size pieces.

Tips When Using a Mechanical Sheeter
Use sufficient flour for dusting, especially between dough and sheeter belt. Avoid tearing dough with the rollers as it may damage lamination. Reduce puff pastry dough to desired size with no less than 5 passes through the sheeter.

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  • Puff pastry dough is best used when crafting shapes that suit your vision. It makes shaping easy thanks to its pliability.
  • For best results, remember to add ventilation holes where necessary, ensuring the pastries rise to perfection.
  • For a golden finish, brush your pastry with an egg wash.

Puff Pastry Dough Tips

Pastries may be made in advance and placed in a cooler (35°-38°F) for baking the next day. Waterwash to prevent excessive crusting during storage. Sugar toppings may dissolve when held and then burn during baking. Add sugar just prior to baking. We also recommend using sparkling, sanding, or Swedish pearl sugar which are perfect for topping pastries and won’t burn as easily.

Pastries may also be made in advance and frozen (0°F or lower) for later use if made with freeze-thaw stable fillings. Cover with plastic to prevent freezer burn. Pastries may be baked from the frozen or thawed state; however, adjust bake time accordingly.

Always use a sharp knife or cutter to cut puff pastry dough. A dull cut will pinch the layers together, resulting in inferior puff height.

To prevent excessive puffing on certain pastries, the dough may need to be docked. This can be done by piercing the dough with a fork or by using a commercial docker.

For light docking, pierce the dough at 2″ intervals. When minimum puffing is desired (e.g. Napoleon layers), pierce the dough at ¼″ intervals.

Filling must be cool before placing on dough pieces to prevent melting of the dough’s shortening.

Edges should be brushed with water before joining to retain pastry shape and prevent fillings from leaking out.

Use firm finger pressure (or fork) to seal pieces together. To ensure proper sealing, be sure that fillings do not touch edges or seams.

Air vents should be cut into unbaked pastry items before baking, especially if the filling is moist. Vents will allow steam to escape and help prevent leakage. Cut vents by using a sharp knife or scissors. Always cut vents on the top side of the pastry item.

Pastries should be placed on a paper lined, cool baking pan at least 1½” apart to allow hot air to circulate.

Puff pastry dough should always be baked in a preheated oven. Most smaller items (2-3 oz.) bake for 20-25 minutes in a 380°-400°F oven; larger items (strudels) at a lower temperature of 370°-380°F for 45-55 minutes to reduce the possibility of collapsing after cooling. Reduce baking temperature by 50°F for a convection oven.

All puff pastries should be baked until golden brown. The pastry should have distinct layers inside and crumble easily when touched. With high moisture fillings, the dough may remain slightly unbaked next to the filling. This is normal.

If pastries are not baked sufficiently inside, lower the oven temperature and bake longer. Be aware that sugar and water will color first, and may mislead as to when the pastry is thoroughly baked.

If not achieving sufficient puff height, check your oven temperature. Hotter temperatures will generally produce a higher puff.

If using bulk dough, allow made-up puff pastry dough to rest approximately 30 minutes before baking to reduce shrinkage.

How to Store

Our Pennant Puff Pastry dough is conveniently packaged, making it easy to store.

  • Simply keep it frozen (0°F or lower) to ensure optimum performance until you’re ready to get creative in the kitchen.
  • Use the thawed dough within 48 hours to ensure that it’s at its finest.
  • For specific guidelines, always follow the specific product instructions provided.
Pastry carton