I’ve had the idea to bake eclairs or profiteroles for a long time. I went online, checked in cookbooks, watched tons of YouTube videos and I tried a couple of times. Alright, more than a couple. Seven (million) in total! Seven unsuccessful attempts and one more than successful!
65 g Flour
Pinch of salt
150 ml Water
50 g Butter
2 Eggs, well beaten
The original recipe is from the book The Dairy Book of Home Cookery which my ever so helpful and friendly neighbor Joyce kindly borrowed me a couple of times. And because I always forget to give her book back, this time she received a well-deserved treat.
I tripled the measurements from the original recipe because I wanted to have a bit more eclairs. Out of these products I’ve made 18 different in size eclairs.
195 g Strong bread flour
150 g Unsalted butter
3 Pinches of salt
450 ml Water
4 Eggs, well beaten
For the filling, I used this recipe from a Bulgarian sweets blogger. The best custard ever!
150 g white sugar
But as you noticed instead of 6 eggs I only used 4 as I needed the right consistency of the mixture. Last time when I followed the original recipe the dough was too liquidy and I struggled to bake the right shape. Speaking of failures, here is a list of very important advises, (out of experience 🙂 ), which will help you avoid the mistakes I’ve made on my last attempts:
- Add the right amount of whisked eggs to the flour mixture to achieve the right consistency. The mixture should be firm enough to stand in soft peaks when lifted with a spoon. Be careful not make it too thick or too liquid. If it’s too soft it’s more likely to deflate after baking. If it’s too thick it becomes dry and less tasty, but keeps the shape better. Find the golden middle.
- When baking, place the tray at the bottom of the oven, this way you’ll have nicely baked eclairs from all sides.
- When ready open the door of the oven really slowly to prevent the eclairs to deflate from the cool air.
- Follow the baking temperatures accurately as you may end up with floppy eclairs. Also, make sure you’ve baked long enough before taking them out or will also deflate.
- When making the ganache make sure the cream is not too hot or boiling. This will ruin it. (5 times went to the bin)
- If the ganache is too thick just add more of the cream, no need to heat up.
- Sift flour and salt twice.
- Put water and butter into a saucepan. Heat slowly until butter melts, then bring to a brisk boil.
- Remove from heat and tip in all the flour.
- Stir briskly until mixture forms a soft ball and leaves sides of pan clean.
- Remove from heat and cool slightly. Add eggs very gradually, beating hard until mixture is smooth, shiny and firm enough to stand in soft peaks when lifted with a spoon.
- Use immediately. Otherwise, leave in the saucepan and cover with a lid to prevent pastry to dry out.
- Shape into eclairs or profiterole whatever you prefer and make sure they’re smooth.
- Bake at 200C for 10 minutes and then reduce to 180C and bake for another 27 minutes if you have small in size eclairs or 32 minutes if you have bigger eclairs.
- Leave them to cool down. Cut a small hole with a sharp knife and fill them with the custard and cream mixture using a cone.
- Finish with the chocolate ganache.
For the filling:
- Heat 400 ml of milk and add the sugar and the butter.
- In a bowl mix the egg yolks and cornflower together.
- When the milk starts to boil switch to low heat and gradually add the egg yolks while constantly whisking. Keep whisking until it thickens.
- Add the vanilla extract or add some vanilla pods in the beginning and keep them until the custard is well flavored.
- Leave it to cool down and fold in the whipped cream.
For the chocolate ganache:
- Heat the cream in a saucepan.
- Remove from the heat and add the chocolate. Leave it for a couple of minutes then stir the mixture.