Pate A Chou
(The dough of the cream puffs)
1) 1 cup water
2) 2 ounces butter
3) 4 ounces flour
4) 4 eggs
1) Bring water, butter, and salt to a boil. Remove from
heat immediately to prevent evaporation.
2) Add flour all at once and stir with a wooden spoon
until completely evaporated. The mixture will pull
away from the sides of the pot.
3) Add eggs one at a time, stirring after each addition.
4) Pipe onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake
for 5 to 10 minutes at 400 deg.
5) Reduce heat to 300 deg. and bake until puffs are
cooked...about 20 minutes.
Pate a choux relies on steam to raise the dough, hence
the initial baking temperature of 400 deg. The oven is
then cooled slightly to 300 deg so the puffs don't burn
but allowed to finish cooking on the inside. A perfect
puff should be crunchy and golden brown on the
outside, airy but still slightly moist on the inside.
Because of the temperature change during cooking,
different sized and/or shaped puffs should be cooked
separately. When piping shapes, lightly press the top
of each puff with a wet fork to prevent uneven rising,
especially if the maximum amount of eggs have been
used. The butter-water-salt stage of the dough (without
the addition of eggs) is called a panade or primary dough.
Completed cream puff dough should be used as soon as
possible, but the baked puffs freeze well and require
virtually no thawing time. Puffs may be used in a variety
of sweet and savory recipes.
(The vanilla custard part of the creme puff)
1) 2 cups milk
2) 6 egg yolks
3) 5 ounces sugar
4) 1 1/2 ounces cornstarch
1) Scald milk with the vanilla
2) In a separate saucepan, mix egg yolks, sugar and
cornstarch. Whisk until pale yellow, thick and
3) Slowly add hot milk to the egg mixture in a stream,
4) Return mixture to stove and cook on medium heat
until mixture thickens and boils, whisking
5) Cook quickly, sprinkle with sugar while warm, and
cover with plastic wrap to prevent a crust from
forming. Chill in refrigerator.
6) Strain through a sieve and whisk before serving.
Creme Patissiere is the standard pastry cream used to
fill tart shells, eclairs, etc.