…and a Happy New Year!
I hope you have all had a great start to 2013. I most certainly did. I brought in the new year with some of my favourite things: food, cheese, friends, laughter, and DESSERT!
We started 2013 with a mountain of my profiteroles, bathed in a mixture of chocolate mousse and chocolate ganache. We just dove in, fingers first.
It. Was. SO. Good.
Profiteroles come with a slight contention in my mums house. They are traditionally my sister’s classic dessert. Not using her recipe meant the little profits were under real scrutiny. Eek!
This mixture made about 70 small profiteroles. Yes I was shocked to see so many. Please don’t hesitate to half the mixture. Unless you want to feed an army of course.
- 125ml milk
- 200ml water
- 150g plain flour
- 1 tsp caster sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 100g butter
- 4 medium eggs, lightly beaten
Is basically cream infused with vanilla pods. Sorry about the fancy pants name.
- 1 vanilla pod, split
- 600ml double cream
- 3-4tbsp icing sugar
- 200g chocolate (use your favourite)
- 100ml double cream
- Sift the flour and salt into a bowl. Place the milk, cold water and sugar in a pan and set over a low heat. Once the sugar has dissolved, add the butter. Once the butter has melted, bring to a rolling boil. Turn off the heat then tip in the flour and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon. As soon as the mixture starts to come away from the side of the pan, stop beating and tip onto a plate to cool.
- Return the mixture to a bowl, and gradually beat in the eggs, a little at a time, mixing well between each addition, until you have a smooth paste. Be sure to add the eggs slowly, as your mixture is at risk of turning lumpy.
- Line a baking sheet with greaseproof paper, and pre-heat the oven to about 200C.
- Spoon the choux pastry into a piping bag fitted with a large plain nozzle (about 1.5cm in diameter). Pipe a small blob of the pastry mix under each corner of the greaseproof to keep the paper in place. Now pipe about 20 walnut-sized balls onto the baking sheet, spaced well apart. Level the peaked tops with the tip of a wet finger then bake for 18-20 minutes until well risen and golden brown. Repeat and repeat if you make the full quota.
- Remove the profiteroles from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before filling.
- For the Chantilly cream scrape the seeds from the vanilla pod into a large mixing bowl. Add the cream, and icing sugar then whisk together until the consistency of a soft meringue with floppy peaks. Spoon the cream into a clean piping bag, fitted with a small plain nozzle. Pierce the base of a choux bun with the tip of the nozzle and pipe in the cream until oozing-ly full. Repeat with the remaining choux buns.
- For the ganache, break the chocolate into small pieces in a heatproof bowl. Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water and heat. Once melted, remove from the heat and mix in the double cream. Let the mixture cool before you top the profiteroles. If the mixture is too solid, warm it in the microwave for 10 seconds, or until it becomes easier to work with again.
If you would like to make a profiterole dessert like I did, then you will need to prepare a portion of my chocolate mousse.
In a large bowl, layer the profiteroles, chocolate mousse and ganache. Cover with sparkles, gold balls, gold leaf (it was NYE), more sparkles and sparklers, and bring to the table to wow your friends.