I wasn’t kidding when I said I have discovered pastry cream. Not quite like Gore discovered the internet, but I am obsessed. Lately, I have been looking for reasons to make it again. With next door neighbors coming over for a baby date, I needed a fairly easy and quick tea-time recipe to whip up. I have put aside making cream puffs for fear that I will mess up a seemingly delicate pâte à choux batter. However, I have found a recipe that comes together effortlessly.
Pâte a choux [pronounced: paht-ah-shoo] comes together using ingredients you likely have on hand. Used for either savory or sweet purposes, you really get creative with what you do with this dough. The recipe below addresses how to make the dough for a sweet preparation. If you wanted to make gougeres or something savory, try adding some grated cheese to the dough for a different take on a great standard recipe.
I made the pastry cream ahead of time, adding whipped cream to the mixture to give it a more pudding and pipeable consistency. To add to the texture variety of this treat, I topped it with homemade chocolate shell. Follow with me if you will. At first bite, you have the crunch, followed by soft almost-flaky dough and finished with a velvety sweet pastry cream. What is not to love?
Pâte à Choux
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 tsp white sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 4 large eggs
- Preheat oven to 425F. Line baking sheets with parchment.
- In a large pan, bring the water and butter to a boil.
- Using a wooden spoon, add in the flour, salt, sugar, and vanilla, and stir in one direction quickly. It should come together like a ball.
- Transfer the mixture to the bowl of your electric mixer. Start the mixer on medium and add all the eggs to the mixture and keep it beating until the dough becomes tacky and starts sticking to the bowl of the mixer.
- Here you can either (1) put everything in a piping bag and pipe small balls of dough or (2) use a cookie scoop.
- Bake at 425F for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350F and cook for 18-30 minutes, depending on the size of your puffs.
- Let cool a bit and then fill with pastry cream (recipe below).
adapted from my pastry cream recipe
- Pastry Cream
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- In your electric mixer, whip up the cream until it forms soft peaks.
- Add the pastry cream to the whipped cream and combine until you reach a pudding consistency.
- Pipe using a piping bag.