I was inspired to make Profiteroles after reading about Sarah's Croquembouche. If you have no idea what a croquembouche is, go to Sarah's blog and find out.
Anyway, I love eating profiterols and have always wanted to make them. Yet I'm really scared about making the choux pastry, so have always resorted to making them using the White Wings boxed one from the supermarket. Anyway, I decided to try it using fresh ingredients this time as I'm a baker now. Well, I try to bake and usually most things succeed.
Sarah was kind enough to type out and send me a choux pastry recipe. Thank you so much for doing that Sarah. For the pastry cream, I used a recipe I've previously used to success.
So how was it to make? The choux pastry wasn't too hard in itself. I did make the mistake of not drying out the milk and flour mixture enough so that the pastry didn't rise as much. I forgot the tip that I saw on TV that said you'll know when it's dry enough when you stop seeing steam rise off it. The pastry cream isn't too hard in itself either. The profiterole as a whole is a little fiddly in terms of having to wait for things to cool before doing the next steps.
And the taste? Amazing. These profiteroles, if I may say so myself, were abso-freaking-licious. These disappeared so quickly when I took them to work, with most people eating three of the massive ones I made. At home, they also disappeared in a day. The pastry was light and had a great flavour. The pastry cream was smooth and rich, but not annoyingly so. With the melted dark chocolate on the top, it all melded into one beautiful mouthful of bliss.
The Roux Brothers on Patisserie
100g butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 tsp fine salt
3/4 tsp sugar
4 x 60g eggs
Preheat the oven to 220C.
1) Put the water, milk, diced butter, salt and sugar in a saucepan, set over high heat and boil for 1 minute, stirring with a spatula.
2)Take the pan off the heat and, stirring all the time, quickly add the sifted flour.
3)The next stage – the ‘drying out’ – is vitally important if you want to make good choux paste. When the mixture is very smooth, replace the pan over the heat and stir with the spatula for 1 minute. The paste will begin to poach and some of the water will evaporate. Tip the paste into a bowl.
4) Immediately beat in the eggs, one at a time, using a spatula or electric mixer. Stir well until the paste is very smooth. It is now ready to use. If you do not want to use it immediately, spread one-third of a beaten egg over the surface to prevent a skin or crust from forming, which may easily happen after a few hours.
5) Choose an appropriate plain nozzle to pipe out your chosen shape. Pipe out the paste on baking parchment or a greased baking sheet.
6)Bake in the preheated oven, then open the oven door slightly (about 1-2cm) after 4 or 5 minutes and leave it ajar. Cooking time will vary from 10-20 minutes, depending on the size of the buns.
Stored in an airtight container, choux paste will keep for 3 days in the fridge, or for up to 1 week in the freezer.
1 cup milk
75g castor sugar
3 egg yolks
25g plain flour
1 tsp butter
Heat milk slowly with 50g of the sugar. Whisk the yolks with 25g of the sugar. When yolk mixture is pale and thick, add the flour and then gradually whisk in the boiling milk. Transfer to a clean saucepan and stir continually until the custard thickens. It will thicken quickly so stir vigorously.
Place pan on a simmer mat and cook for 2 minutes, stirring all the while. Remove from heat, scoop into a bowl and skim the surface with the teaspoon of butter to prevent a skin forming. Allow to cool to room temperature.
Either cut the choux puffs 3/4 of the way around so that it opens up like clam shell and spoon in the pastry cream, or poke a small hole and pipe in the pastry cream. Then melt about 50g of dark chocolate over a double boiler and spread the chocolate over the top of the profiteroles.