Cream Puffs with Pastry Cream
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon Dixie Crystals Extra Fine Granulated Sugar
- 7 tablespoons unsalted butter, in slices
- 1 cup + 3 tablespoons all-purpose or bread flour*
- 4 large eggs + 1 egg white
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 4 tablespoons Dixie Crystals Extra Fine Granulated Sugar
- 6 ounces best quality chocolate (60-70% cocoa) Higher cocoa = stronger chocolate flavor)
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- *Spoon & Sweep method: Use a spoon to fill measuring cup with flour until required amount is obtained. Scooping measuring cup directly into flour bag will firmly pack flour resulting in too much flour required for recipe.
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- In a saucepan large enough to hold all ingredients, bring milk, water, salt, sugar, and butter to a boil.
- Remove boiling mixture from heat source and rapidly stir in flour with a wooden or heat resistant rubber spatula.
- Return mixture to heat source and stir over heat for 1-2 minutes or until mixture forms a ball.
- Remove from heat. Incorporating eggs can be done using a stand mixer or hand held mixer. Either drop batter in a mixer bowl fitted with paddle attachment or in a regular bowl.
- Mix in eggs and egg white one at a time waiting for previously added egg to be fully incorporated. Mix until mixture is smooth and shiny.
- Batter can be piped on cookie sheets or dropped with a spoon. On parchment paper or lined cookie sheets, pipe batter using a medium plain tip in tablespoon amounts. Leave 2 fingers of space between each for expanding. If using a spoon, drop batter into one tablespoon amounts in a round mound leaving two fingers of space.
- Bake at 400°F until very dry and crisp and deep golden. Do not under bake as this will cause puffs to collapse. When you believe they are done, take one puff out oven and feel sides, it should feel crisp. Let sit for a 3-4 minutes. If it does not collapse, remove others from oven.
- For pastry cream, bring milk, heavy cream and first listed sugar to a boil.
- Meanwhile in a separate bowl, whisk together yolks and remaining sugar. Once mixture is well combined, add cornstarch.
- Pour 1/4 of boiling cream into egg yolk mixture to temper. Mix well. Pour egg yolk mixture into boiling milk and whisk to a boil and until cream is thickened.
- Place pan over ice and stir in butter and vanilla extract. Cover with plastic and remove from ice when cold.
- For chocolate ganache, chop chocolate into small pieces and place in a bowl; set aside.
- In a saucepan, bring heavy cream and sugar to a boil. Pour boiling cream onto chopped chocolate. Add butter.
- Whisk until smooth and chocolate is melted.
- The chocolate ganache can be reheated in a microwave oven at a later time. For a thinner consistency, add more boiling cream or milk.
- Fill cream puffs with pastry cream or homemade ice cream and cover with chocolate ganache.
The pastry cream can be used for fruit tarts as well. The chocolate ganache is great as a topping over ice cream or other desserts. At room temperature, it can be used to frost cakes, blondies or brownies.