Friday, 2 September 2011

Mini Chocolate Eclairs

I had forgotten how easy these were to make. They are made from a pastry that in my mind has suffered some bad press for being difficult to make. If you are new to Eclairs and Profiteroles they are made from Choux (pronounced shoe) pastry and then filled with fresh cream, topped with plain chocolate.The profiteroles are usually served after dinner with hot chocolate sauce poured over, the Eclairs are perfect with a cup of coffee. I won't judge you if you eat the whole batch yourself, but it is acceptable in polite society to share!

Makes 14-16

50g Butter
150ml Cold Water
65g Plain flour, sifted
2 Medium eggs
250ml Whipped cream
100g Dark chocolate, melted

Preheat the oven to 200C/350F/ Gas Mark 5 and line two large baking tray with baking paper. Heat the butter and water in a small saucepan until the butter is melted. Bring to the boil.

Remove from the heat and using a wooden spoon beat in all the flour at once. When the mixture comes away from the sides of the pan, allow to cool slightly.

Then add an egg at a time until they're incorporated.

The pastry should be smooth and silky when both eggs are beaten in.

Place the pastry into a piping bag and pipe 5cm lengths and bake for 14-16 mins or until golden brown (don't be tempted to peep into the oven while they are baking or you'll have very flat eclairs!!).

Cool on a wire rack and slit with a sharp knife to let the steam out otherwise they will collapse.

When cool fill with the whipped cream and top with the melted chocolate.

Alternatively you could pipe walnut size blobs on your tray for Profiteroles. If you decide to make profiteroles, once piped wet your finger and push down any spikes to prevent them from burning in the oven. Cook in the same way as the eclairs.

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