Sunday, August 31, 2008
Is an éclair supposed to be like this?
Daring Bakers time again, my friends. This month's recipe, chosen by Meeta and Tony, is from a book I'm dying to get: Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Hermé.
Thus, I was excited from the get go. Even more so when I actually read the recipe and realized that this was all about éclairs. Something I've never tried. As in, never, ever, tried. Not to eat, not to make.
I have made cheese puffs, using a choux pastry dough with cheese, and loads of armpower. (Most of it provided by my able friends.) That was.. not so much fun actually, but quite tasty in the end.
This recipe turned out to be a lot easier. First of all - there was specific instructions for using a stand mixer. Excellent. That sure saved my shoulder from excessive beating. And second of all - I didn't encounter a single snag, because I was so appallingly late in doing this that many other Daring Bakers had already put up their posts, complete with good tips.
Thanks in particular to Fanny, who mentioned spraying the dough with water after shaping and also slitting the baked puffs with a knife right away. I did both - misting the dough once right before going in the oven and twice during baking, and then slitting them open straight away when they were done. Which they were after about 17 minutes. I have a convection oven and didn't bother with the rotating sheet thing. Sorry. But other than that, I followed the instructions.
Wait. More or less. Because I didn't make a pastry cream. I know, I know. But the guidelines gave us some leeway there, and I ended up just mixing vanilla custard (from a box!!) with some whipped cream. I had plans to add fresh berries, but the realities of life foiled me once again and well, no berries. I bet it'd have worked really well though, a few fat raspberries tucked underneath the glazed tops... well, next time. They were delicious just like this though. I particularly liked the chocolate glaze - that recipe is a keeper for sure!
You can find the recipes here, the blogroll here, and the discussion forums - open to everyone! - here.
I translated the parts of the recipe that I used - you can find that here.