Pastéis de Santa Clara (pastries from Coimbra Portugal)


Pastéis de Santa Clara (pastries from Coimbra Portugal)

Santa Clara pastries a crispy dough with a sweet almond and egg yolk filling. The pastries were named after the Santa Clara convent in Coimbra, where they were invented and prepared by nuns.It is believed that the pastries were popularized in the 19th century when the nuns started selling them to numerous students in Coimbra.the Pastéis de Santa Clara, associated with the religious order of Saint Clair and its once flooded monastery
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Course Dessert
Cuisine Portuguese
Servings 12


  • 4 inch cookie cutter


  • ½ cup butter soft
  • cups flour
  • 3 tbsp water
  • tsp salt


  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp water
  • ¼ tsp lemon juce
  • ½ cup almond flour
  • 4 egg yolks
  • tsp salt



  • Cube the butter into about 1/2 inch cubes. Add the butter and water into the flour, then knead for about 3 minutes until you get a smooth dough.
  • Cover with a plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour up to 24 hours.


  • Add the sugar lemon juice and water to a saucepan, then bring to a boil for 1-2 minutes until syrupy.
  • Then, add the almond flour and the yolks you've previously whisked and immediately stir until you get a thick paste. Cook over low heat for about 1 minute or until the temperature of the mixture gets to 170°F
  • Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Just the surface with a little bit of flour, and roll it out very thin, about 1/8-inch in thickness. I used a 4 inch cookie cutter you could use up to a 5 inch cookie cutter.
    cookie cutter
  • Cut out circles in the dough with a 4 to 5-inch cutter.
  • Brush the edges of the circles with a little bit of water. Place a teaspoon of the almond filling in the center of each circle, then fold to form a half moon shape.
    dough 4
  • After you cut a few circles, take the scraps of leftover dough and need into a ball, so you can roll it out once again and cut out more circles. (if the dough has dried tune to the absorption of the flower on your rolling surface you can sprinkle the dough with a little more water).
  • bake at 200°C or 400°F for 20-25 minutes or until golden.
  • Take out of the oven let cool down for about 10 minutes. Then brush with some melted butter. Put the powdered sugar in a sieve and dust with powdered sugar.
    powdered sugar


cookie cutters
Keyword COIMBRA desserts, Conventual sweets, food from coimbra
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Hello, I'm Michael!

I aspire to share recipes that you and your family can enjoy while also learning about cooking fundamentals along the way. I attended the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco, CA and now enjoy cooking as a hobby.

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