These luscious finger-sized éclairs filled with vanilla cream and topped with a dark chocolate glaze are perfect with an espresso.
Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Baking Time: 25 minutes
Makes 30 pieces
FOR THE PATE A CHOUX (OR THE ÉCLAIR SHELL)
125 ml water
125 ml full cream milk
2 tablespoons white sugar
Pinch of salt
115 grams unsalted butter
140 grams all-purpose flour
4 pieces medium-sized eggs
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
FOR EGG WASH
1 free-range egg
1 Put the water, milk, sugar, salt, and butter in a pot and place it on the stove at medium heat. Stir all the ingredients and wait until it comes to a boil.
2 Remove pan from the heat and add in the flour; mix well using a wooden spoon. Put the pan back to the stove. Cook the mixture for about 5 minutes until it takes a rounded shape and until the consistency turns into dough.
3 Remove pan from the heat. Add the eggs one by one, including the two tablespoons of vanilla extract. Mix until well-incorporated.
4 Using a piping bag with a round- fitted tip, pipe the dough in a straight line of 5 centimeters on a tray covered in parchment paper.
5 To make the egg wash, beat the egg in a small bowl. Using a brush or your fingers, smooth out any bumps on the dough with the egg wash.
6 Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown at 180 °C. 5 minutes before the end of the cooking time, slightly open the oven to release the steam.
FOR THE VANILLA PASTRY CREAM
250 ml full cream milk
60 grams white sugar
3 egg yolks
25 grams cornstarch
2 grams unsalted butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 In a medium-sized pot, bring the milk and 30 grams of sugar to a boil.
2 Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, mix the egg yolks with the remaining sugar as well as the cornstarch. Mix well.
3 Remove the milk from the heat and pour 1/3 of it into the egg mixture and mix using a wooden spoon. Pour the mixture into the remaining milk.
4 Return the pot on the stove on a low-medium heat and continuously mix until the texture turns thick and creamy, for approximately 5 minutes.
5 Add vanilla extract after taking it out of the heat and strain the mixture into a clean bowl. Secure the top of the bowl with a plastic wrap and refrigerate.
FOR THE GLAZE
250 grams of dark chocolate
In a double boiler, melt the dark chocolate.
1 Put holes with the size of a pencil at the bottom of the pate a choux and using a piping bag fitted with a round tip, fill the shells with cream.
2 Top the éclairs with melted dark chocolate. Let cool and serve.
This recipe was originally published in the October-November 2015 issue of Breakfast Magazine.