Monday, 13 February 2017

Choux Pastry

I rarely make choux pastry, however, there was a time when it seemed that I was making it all the time. Choux pastry is the base for profiteroles and eclairs.

It is not difficult to make with a food processor or heavy duty mixer although the beating by hand is hard work. The paste must be well beaten until glossy, this helps develop the gluten in the flour.

The paste is cooked and then eggs are beaten into the flour mixture.

The paste can be piped or spooned onto a tray or baking parchment.

If making profiteroles or puffs it is easy to just spoon the mixture onto the trays.

The puffs must go into a hot oven so that the high moisture content of the paste is converted to steam causing the puffs to expand and rise or puff up. Once cooked the heat is reduced so that the puffs can dry out inside, residual paste can be removed and the puffs returned to the oven to dry out further.

The yellow 'claggy' middle can be removed.

Fill puffs/ eclairs with whipped cream, pastry cream/custard or chocolate pastry cream/custard and ice with melted chocolate.

Profiteroles have a chocolate sauce.

A large puff filled with whipped cream and fresh berries are a delicious dessert.

Salambbo, puffs with whipped cream/custard filling and a toffee coating.

Choux Pastry

1 cup flour
1 cup water
125 g butter
3 eggs

Put water and butter into a medium saucepan and bring to the boil. 
Reduce the heat and then add the flour all at once and stir until the mixture forms a smooth ball.
Allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes then beat in the eggs one at a time. Beat thoroughly until mixture is glossy and smooth. Use a food processor or electric beater if you have one.
Cool thoroughly before using the mixture. It can be refrigerated.
Spoon or pipe the paste onto trays lined with baking parchment
Bake at 220 deg C for 15 - so minutes and then reduce the heat to 180 deg C.
Cook until golden brown.

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