Chocolate Painted Eclairs With French Vanilla Cream

Chocolate Painted Eclairs With French Vanilla Cream
Recipe by Dana McCauley

There were 3 options for the Sweets course on Titanic's 1st class menu. These Eclairs were my favourite to make and to eat out of the 3 choices. Choux pastry takes some time and patience but the results are so worth it. The French Vanilla Cream is luscious and heavenly. You will love them. Enjoy!

Makes 20-25 small éclairs

Pastry Cream:
6 egg yolks
1/2 cup granulated sugar
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup whipping cream

Choux Pastry:
1 cup water
1/2 cup butter
Pinch of salt
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
5 eggs, room temperature
1 tablespoon water
3 oz. bitter sweet chocolate
Icing sugar or edible fold flakes

1. In bowl, whisk together egg yolks and ¼ cup of the sugar for 2 minutes or until pale yellow. Adding flour in 3 additions, stir until well mixed.

2. In saucepan, heat milk, remaining sugar, and vanilla bean over medium heat, stirring often, for 8 to 10 minutes or until sugar is dissolved and small bubbles are beginning to form around edges of pot. Stirring constantly, pour about one-third of the milk mixture into egg mixture and stir until thoroughly combined.

3. Pour egg mixture into remaining milk and cook, stirring for 3 to 4 minutes or until mixture begins to bubble. Continue to cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes or until mixture begins to mound and hold its shape; remove from heat. Stir in butter and remove vanilla bean. Transfer to bowl, cover with plastic wrap touching surface of custard, and cool to room temperature.

4. Beat whipping cream until stiff; add a large dollop of cream to cooled pastry cream and fold in; add remaining whipped cream and fold in until almost combined.
Transfer to pastry bag fitted with ½-inch star tube. Place in refrigerator until completely chilled.

5. Choux Pastry: Meanwhile, in heavy-bottomed saucepan set over high heat, bring water, butter, and salt just to boil. Remove from heat and add flour all at once, stirring vigorously with wooden spoon until mixture comes away from sides of pan, making a smooth ball.

6. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook flour mixture, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes or until coating begins to form on bottom of pan. Turn into large bowl; stir for 30 seconds.

7. Make well in middle of dough and, using electric mixer, beat in 4 of the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Continue beating until mixture is smooth and shiny and holds its shape when lifted.

8. Place dough into piping bag fitted with 3/4-inch wide tip. On parchment-lined baking sheets, pipe fingers of dough about 4 inches long and 1 wide. In bowl beat together remaining egg and 1 tbsp water; brush each bun lightly, being careful not to drip down sides.

9. Bake in 425F oven for 12 minutes; reduce heat to 375F and bake for 5 minutes longer or until golden brown. With sharp knife, pierce side of each éclair twice. Turn oven off and let éclairs stand for 5 minutes, then remove and cool on rack.

10. Melt chocolate over barely simmering water. Brush top of each cooled éclair with enough chocolate to coat well. Cool in refrigerator for 5 minutes to harden chocolate. Halve éclairs lengthwise. Pull out any sticky dough in center; discard (I didn't need to do this step as my choux was dried and had natural holes in it). Pipe pastry cream into bottom of each éclair. Replace chocolate-covered tops. Dust with icing sugar or edible gold flakes just before serving.


Priya Suresh said...

Irresistible eclairs,loving it..

Patsyk said...

I have always wanted to make these at home... I'll have to give it a try now using the recipe you have here as it looks fantastic!

Jo said...

I'm very surprised to read this recipe as most English chefs make eclairs with fresh cream. They still sound pretty good though.

Peter M said...

These were dreamy...could have eaten a dozen. No comparison to donut shop variety.

Lara said...

Let's have a look to my blog
I'm talking about your projet.

Christel said...

How lovely to find your blog. I wish you best of luck with the Titanic dinner party:) Seems like an interesting task. Greetings from Norway:)

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