Choux pastry petits fours

    3 hours 25 min

    Some French petits fours are quite elaborate but the ones consisting of choux pastry with a pastry cream filling can be managed even by home bakers. Start by making the custard so it has time to chill.


    1 person made this

    Ingredients
    Makes: 35  pastries

    • For the custard
    • 500ml milk
    • 1 vanilla bean or 1 tablespoon vanilla flavour
    • 2 eggs
    • 100g caster sugar
    • 80g plain flour
    • For the choux pastry
    • 250ml water
    • 1 tablespoon caster sugar
    • 1 pinch salt
    • 50g butter
    • 150g plain flour
    • 4 eggs
    • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa
    • For the icing
    • icing sugar
    • juice of 1 lemon
    • a few drops food colouring (optional)

    Method
    Prep:1hr  ›  Cook:25min  ›  Extra time:2hr setting  ›  Ready in:3hr25min 

      Custard:

    1. In a saucepan, bring milk and vanilla to the boil. Meanwhile combine eggs, sugar and flour in a medium bowl and mix well. Gradually add hot milk, whisking constantly. Pour this mixture back into the saucepan and bring to the boil once again, then reduce heat to low; simmer, stirring constantly with wire whisk, until cream thickens.
    2. Divide custard into 2 bowls and add the cocoa to one bowl, stir to dissolve. Cover and let cool in refrigerator.
    3. Choux pastry:

    4. Preheat oven to 210 C / Gas 7 and grease two baking trays.
    5. In a large saucepan bring water, sugar, salt and butter to the boil. Add flour all at once and stir with a wooden spoon. Remove from heat and add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each egg.
    6. Pipe small mounds of pastry (round or elongated), using a pastry bag, on prepared baking sheets.
    7. Bake for 25 minutes; pastries should be golden and puffy. Let cool on rack.
    8. Pierce tops of pastries with a knife and fill with chilled vanilla or chocolate cream using a pastry bag with a fine tip.
    9. Icing:

    10. In a small bowl mix enough lemon juice with a bit of icing sugar for a smooth, thick icing. Add a few drops of food colouring for desired colour, if using.
    11. Brush icing on top of pastries and place on serving plate or platter. Refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.

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