Éclairs do not need any introduction, do they? Everyone of us (except for vegetarians/vegans from birth) must have had éclairs atleast once in their lives. My take on éclairs came from a friend buying an éclair at some bakery shop while finding it too hard to even bite and the plain whipping cream being too thick and stiff to eat. We tend to think good food needs much effort to make but éclairs have nothing difficult about them! Make a choux pastry, a Crème Patissière and a chocolate ganache - 3 easy straight forward steps to follow and you get to enjoy homemade Éclairs!
1. For the Choux Pastry
- 3 Eggs at room temperature
- 1/4 Cup of Unsalted Butter, cubed (1/2 Stick or 56.7g)
- 1/2 Cup of Water (125ml)
- 1/2 Cup of All-Purpose Flour (62.5g; sifted after measuring)
- 1 Tbsp of Sugar
2. For the Filling - Crème Patissière
- 2 Egg Yolks
- 2½ Tbsp of Sugar
- 1½ Tbsp of Corn Flour
- 1½ Tbsp of All-Purpose Flour
- 1 Cup of Milk
- 1/4 Cup of Whipping Cream
- 1/2 Tsp of Vanilla Essence
3. For the Chocolate Ganache
- 1/4 Cup of Whipping Cream
- 1/4 Cup of Baking Chocolate
Makes 12 Éclairs
Step 1 : Choux Pastry
- Preheat oven to 220˚C. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and sprinkle with some flour. (I am using a silicone baking mat which does not need any flour or oil spray)
- Bring the water, sugar and butter to a slow boil in a pan until frothy.
- Add the flour to pan and stir with a wooden spoon until a soft ball forms; this shouldn't take longer than 30 seconds!
- Turn of the heat and remove pan from the stove. Give the mixture a few strokes with the wooden spoon to allow slight cooling.
- Add the eggs one at a time, mixing vigorously to obtain a smooth and homogenous batter.
- Spoon the batter into a piping bag fitted with a wilton 1A tip or a just cut the end with a 2cm diameter.
- On the baking sheet, pipe out oblong shapes, about 3-3½ inches long.
- Let bake for 8-10 minutes and then reduce the temperature to 180˚C.
- Bake the until golden brown or for another 20-25 minutes.
- Turn the oven off and allow the choux pastry to rest in the oven for 5-10 minutes.
- Cut open the pastries on one side, to let trapped steam off and allow complete cooling on a wire rack.
Step 2 : Crème Patissière
- Meanwhile, make the filling - the Crème Patissière. Combine the egg yolks and the sugar.
- Using a whisk, whip until pale. Add corn flour and flour and mix well.
- In a pan bring milk and vanilla essence to a boil.
- Little by little add the milk to the egg mixture, making sure you whisk simultaneously and quickly so as to prevent any eggs from cooking.
- Pour the mixture back into the pan on medium low heat and whisk until mixture thickens up.
- Allow cooling. Cover with plastic wrap to prevent any lump from forming.
- Whip the whipping cream until soft peaks form.
- Mix whipped cream with the pastry cream and transfer into a piping bag.
- Fill the choux pastries with enough Crème Patissière.
Step 3 : Chocolate Ganache
- In a saucepan, bring the whipping cream to a soft boil.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat and toss in the baking chocolate.
- Using a whisk, combine the cream with the chocolate until smooth.
- Let cool slightly. and drizzle over the Éclairs or dip them into the chocolate ganache!
|Delectable Chocolate Éclairs with Vanilla Pastry Cream Filling.|