Eclairs

A simple choux pastry has been shaped into eclairs and dressed up with espresso cream and praline.
A simple choux pastry has been shaped into eclairs and dressed up with espresso cream and praline. Photo: Marina Oliphant

You can pipe the pastry out as suggested to make a classic eclair shape or use a star nozzle in your piping bag for a different look. Alternatively, you could spoon mounds onto your baking tray to make profiteroles, dip in chocolate, sprinkle with praline and then pipe the espresso cream inside.

Ingredients

Choux pastry

100ml milk

80g butter

1 tsp castor sugar

1 pinch salt

120g plain flour

3 large eggs, whisked

200g dark chocolate, to serve

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 220C, fan-forced.

2. In a small saucepan bring the milk, butter, sugar, salt and 100 millilitres of water to a simmer. Tip the flour in and stir with a wooden spoon over medium heat for three to five minutes; it will start to pull away from the sides of the pan and form a ball, but keep beating it around to cook out the flour. Take off the heat and leave to cool for a couple of minutes.

3. Slowly beat in the eggs, making sure each addition is incorporated before adding the next. Then add the mix to a stand mixer with a K-beater attached and mix until the dough is smooth and silky.

4. Spoon the mix into a piping bag with a plain nozzle and pipe into lines on a lined baking tray, leaving three-centimetre spaces between each line. Wet your fingers and flick water over the tray — the steam will aid rising. Bake for 12 minutes until puffed and golden, reduce the heat to 180C fan-forced and cook for a further five minutes. Allow to cool.

5. Melt the chocolate in a bowl sitting on top of a saucepan with an inch or so of barely simmering water. Dip the eclairs in the chocolate, sprinkle with praline (recipe here) and allow to set.

6. Slice the eclairs open and fill with the espresso cream (recipe here) and serve.