Creme patissiere eclairs
Eclairs are a yummy french treat that are actually very easy to make. They start with a choux pastry where fat and four and water are cooked together and then eggs are beaten in, this pastry is then piped into eclairs or profiteroles and baked - so it is the only twice cooked pastry! I have chosen to keep these very classic by filling them with creme patissiere which is a lovely french vanilla custard.
I have chosen to make a simple chocolate glaze for a glossy finish.
For the chocolate glaze
180g icing sugar
3 tbsp cocoa powder
Pre-heat oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/gas 6.
Line a large flat baking tray with grease proof paper of Teflon sheets.
Spoon the choux pastry into a piping bag fitted with a plain round 1cm nozzle and pipe out 8 12cm long fingers on to the lined baking tray.
Place in the oven and bake for 10 minutes then reduce the heat to 180°C and bake for a further 20-25 minutes until well puffed and golden brown.
When baked turn down the heat to 120°C. Remove the eclairs from the oven and make a slot roughly 1.5 cm long in the side of each one. The éclairs should be light in weight and hollow inside. Return to the oven for 5 minutes so that they can dry out.
Once completely baked cool on a wire rack and slice in half length ways.
Whilst the éclairs are cooling, prepare the creme patissiere. You can find the step by step recipe with pictures here.
When the creme patissiere has cooled transfer it to a piping bag fitted with a medium plain round nozzle.
Using a knife or a nozzle pierce 3 holes in the base of the eclairs.
Pipe the creme patissiere into the eclair through the 3 holes, this is to ensure the eclair is evenly filled.
Next prepare the chocolate glaze. Stir together the icing sugar and cocoa powder, then stir in 4-5 tsp of cold water. Do this bit by bit checking the consistency as you go along, you may not need to use all of the water. the glaze should run off of the spoon but be thick enough to coat the spoon.
Finally glaze the eclaires by spooning over the glaze or dipping them in the glaze.