Over the weekend I decided to use the left over hazelnut paste from class…by left over paste, I really mean I took some home deliberately…by deliberately I mean don’t tell my chef.
Anyways, cream puffs are a favorite of mine. They are super easy to make, fun to pip, fill and typically a pretty good crowd pleaser.
I’m going to just call these circular puffs donuts, there is actually a french word for this type of shape but I forget, and donuts sounds much better ya?
All you need is a piping bag, round tip is optional, I just cut off the tip of the bag to the size I wanted my mini puff donuts to be. They were brushed with egg wash and crumbled with sliced almonds on top. These donut puffs were filled with pastry cream and added hazelnut paste.
1. Bring water, butter and salt to a boil in a heavy bottom pot
2. Once boiling, sift in bread flour and use a wooden spoon to mix.
3. Mix constantly, the flour and water mixture should come together pretty quickly.
4. Mixture should be done and taken off the heat once the dough comes together into a ball, sides and bottom of the pot should leave a filmy residue.
5. Dump ball of dough into a bowl for mixing.
6. Using a paddle whisk, mix the hot dough to cool down slightly.
7. Once okay to poke your fingers into the mixture without crying in pain, gradually add eggs one at a time till it is fully incorporated.
8. Fill piping bag, and pipe whatever the hell you want. In this case, we are going to make cute swans so you may need an extra piping bag.
How to pipe swans
1. Using any kind of star tip, this makes the best swan butt, the wings look nicer with the ridges over a plain tip.
2. Pipe in the shape of a shell, try not to drag out a tail too thin, it will burn in the oven.
3. Depending on the size you pipe out, the time will vary. In this case my swan bottoms were roughly the size of 2.5 toonies and took roughly 17-18 minutes at 400F, butts should be pretty brown and should sound hollow.
Part 2 of Swan Puffs
1. You’ll need to pipe the swan head/necks on a separate parchment paper since the baking time will be a lot less than the bottoms.
2. Using a smaller pipping hole, pipe out a round head and make a “2″ shape… essentially think of making squiggly sperm..haha!
3. Make sure you don’t pipe out gigantic swan heads, make it in proportion to the size of your bottoms!
4. I baked the necks for about 10 minutes.
Tips: Do your best to make the heads balanced at the end, meaning don’t make the end of the neck shorter than the length of the head, putting everything together will be much easier if the head can stay on its own in the cream.
With the baked swan bottoms, carefully slice the top off, about 1/3 of the body. With the sliced off top, cut the top in half and set each swan aside, you do not want to mix them up since all the bottoms have matching tops.
Fill the bottom butts with pastry cream of your choice, in this case I think the swans look best with vanilla pastry cream. Stick the neck into the cream and make sure its steady before you add the wings. The two wings set one on top of the other wing making the wing look more popped out. Dust with icing sugar and ta-da!
Notice the ridges in the wings? Using a star tip gives you this look over a plain tip :)
Any questions or anything you don’t understand? Just let me know via comment…I didn’t really feel like going into in depth detail or anything it’s that kind of post today ~_~