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A plate of palmiers
Alternative namesPalm tree, elephant ear, pig's ear, prussiens
Place of origin France
Main ingredientsPuff pastry, butter, sugar
Pig's ears

A palmier (/ˈpælmi/, from French, short for feuille de palmier 'palm tree leaf'), pig's ear,[1] palm heart, or elephant ear[2] is a French pastry in a palm leaf shape or a butterfly shape, sometimes called palm leaves, cœur de France, French hearts, shoe-soles, or glasses that were invented in the beginning of the 20th century.[3]


Palmiers are made from puff pastry, a laminated dough similar to the dough used for croissant, but without yeast. The puff pastry is rolled out, coated with sugar, and then the two sides are rolled up together so that they meet in the middle, making a roll that is then cut into about 14 in (6 mm) slices and baked. Usually it is rolled in sugar before baking.


The pastries are known as palmeras ("palm trees") in Spain, and they can be topped with coconut or chocolate; they are also available for purchase in a larger version.[4] In the Puerto Rican version, they are topped with honey. In Mexico and other Latin American countries they are known as orejas ("ears") or orejitas ("Little ears"). In Colombia they are known as mariposas ("butterflies"). In Argentina and Chile, they are known as palmeritas, derivative from the Spanish denomination.

In the United States, desserts similar to palmiers known as pastry hearts are popular in Buffalo.[5]

In Greece they are usually known as little glasses (γυαλάκια). In Germany they are Schweineohren ("pig's ears"); in Italy Prussiane (derisively after the ostensibly large ears of Prussian invaders) or, more often, ventagli / ventagliette "fan" / "little fans"; in Switzerland Prussiens or cœur de France.[6] In Catalonia and Valencia they are called ulleres (eyeglasses) or palmeras. In England, they are called little hearts or sweet hearts, and in Scotland pig's ears or pig's lugs.

In Japan, they are called Genji Pie. In India they are known as elephant ears or French hearts. In China, they are known as butterfly pastries. In Pakistan they are called French hearts. In Ukraine they are known as вушка ("little ears") and in Russia - ушки ("little ears" also).

An arlette is a cinnamon-flavoured palmier biscuit.[7]

See also


  1. ^ Ling Yeow, Poh (5 May 2016). "Palmier (palm hearts or pig's ears)". Special Broadcasting Service. Australia. Archived from the original on 21 November 2017. Retrieved 6 June 2018.
  2. ^ "Elephant Ears (Palmiers)". Les Gourmands du South End. March 22, 2009. Archived from the original on 13 September 2017. Retrieved 6 June 2018.
  3. ^ "The Fascinating History Behind These Iconic Holiday Cookies". Redbook. 2018-12-11. Retrieved 2024-01-01.
  4. ^ Moreno, Itziar (February 5, 2016). "Las 5 mejores palmeras de Bilbao (The 5 Best Palmeras of Bilbao)". (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 30 August 2018. Retrieved 6 June 2018.
  5. ^ Hayden, Brian (2022-02-14). "Buffalo: Home of the Pastry Heart". Visit Buffalo Niagara. Retrieved 2024-04-04.
  6. ^ Erhard Gorys [in German] (2001). Das neue Küchenlexikon. München. ISBN 3-423-36245-6.((cite book)): CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  7. ^ "Dominique Ansel's Arlette Pastry Recipe". Bon Appétit. Condé Nast. September 26, 2012. Archived from the original on 5 September 2017. Retrieved 6 June 2018.