Monday, 31 March 2008

Cooking star

Today I feel like a cooking god!

A nice quiet day at home inspires a cooking challenge. What could I make that I had never tackled before? Something that intimidates me a little and whose ingredients I had in my house, after three days of no shops being open.

Choux pastry! I am not quite sure why I've been frightened by it, but it just always has seemed a bit grown up and complicated. I had visions of flat unpuffed blobs of cooked dough coming out of the oven. It was time to face that fear. I did a bit of a search for recipes, and found plenty of them. I had a feeling though that the US recipes would be a disaster for me, being as they are, determinedly non-metric. So the following recipe comes to you thanks to (and specifically from Good Taste magazine) and I am pleased to report a complete success.

Choux Pastry


25-30 profiteroles


  • 80ml (1/3 cup) water
  • 40g butter, at room temperature, cubed
  • 50g (1/3 cup) plain flour, sifted
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • Vegetable oil, to grease


  1. Place water and butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 3-4 minutes or until butter melts and mixture just comes to the boil.
  2. Add all the flour to the butter mixture at once and use a wooden spoon to beat until well combined. Place over low heat and cook, stirring, for 1-2 minutes or until the mixture forms a ball and begins to come away from the side of the saucepan. Set aside for 5 minutes to cool slightly. Whisk 1 egg in a small bowl and set aside. Whisk the remaining egg in a small bowl, then add it to the flour mixture, beating well with a wooden spoon. Gradually add a little of the reserved egg and beat until the mixture just falls from the spoon but still holds its shape. (Now this is where I was kinda stumped, I couldn't figure out what "just falls from the spoon meant"). Too much egg will make the choux rise unevenly and spread. Not enough egg and the choux will be stodgy.
  3. Preheat oven to 200°C. Brush a baking tray with oil to lightly grease. Spoon 25-30 teaspoonsful of the mixture onto tray, about 3cm apart. Alternatively, use a pastry bag fitted with a 1.5cm-diameter plain piping nozzle to pipe the profiteroles onto the baking tray. Brush the tops with a little of the remaining egg. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes or until the profiteroles are puffed and golden.
  4. Remove from oven and turn the oven off. Using a skewer or a small knife, pierce the base (or top) of each profiterole to release the steam. Return the profiteroles to the oven and leave them for 15 minutes to dry out. Remove the profiteroles from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.


Australian Good Taste - April 2003 , Page 88

My workmates were very happy to be taste testers for this particular recipe, in the form of profiteroles and mini chocolate eclairs.


Cynthia said...

You made eclairs from scratch? :O Watch me, I am bowing in respect and total admiration. Now if only we did not live so far apart.

farida said...

I've made eclairs twice in my life and both times they turned out ok but not great, and i never dared to make them ever since:) what an inspiration you are! Your eclairs look delicoius!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Wonderful! You did a great job here!