Raspberry-Rose Pastry Cream filled Eclairs

Mother’s day is this weekend. It is indeed a special day. Everyday is mother’s day, but not every day is the mother appreciated, or given the pampering she deserves. Mothers work tirelessly to provide for their family. We are not allowed to fall sick, because if we do, who will do all the chores? Mothers hold the fort together, providing for the family. I do not really like talking much about mother’s day, because it makes me really sad to think of my mom who is no longer there. I feel blessed though to have my own family, and my own children, and to be able to be a mother to my 2 beautiful children.

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It was difficult for me to get pregnant, something I have not spoken about at all. I had PCOS, something that is very common amongst a lot of women, preventing women from getting pregnant. It took me more than a year to fix all my issues, with due diligence, and a strong desire to be a mother. I know there are a lot of women in the same boat as me, and it is very hard a process to go through. If you are interested to know more, I will one of these days talk about it a bit more in another post, and my journey to getting pregnant. It is a very sensitive topic. I can just say that I am blessed to be a mother now!

 

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On a more chirpier note, let’s talk about desserts for Mother’s Day! Last year, I made a Rose-Raspberry Lemon Tart with Pink Meringues which turned out so pretty! It was one of my most popular recipes in 2017. This year, I have been wanting to try pate a choux pastry and I finally got rid of my fears and gave it a go! I tried the pate a choux for cream puffs first, my first couple of attempts were pretty good! I was quite happy with the result! I tried a flavor profile which I will reveal sometime end of the year! 🙂

Next, I tried the eclairs, I had a failed attempt, my pate a choux did not rise at all. My dough was a bit loose and I know that was the issue. I also opened the oven to turn them around, which deflated the eclairs, so I remembered NOT to open the oven again when the eclairs were baking.  I tried it a second time, and this time it was better but not to my satisfactory. The 3rd time is a charm and it worked out perfect! The ridges from the star french pastry tip were perfect, giving it that hard outside, a soft interior inside. The color was perfectly brown, and it was light and hollow to the touch.

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Another tip I learnt during my attempts is that you start off baking at a high temperature, so that the choux rises and creates a hollow interior. Then you stabilize and bake at a lower temperature to actually bake it from the inside, and continue to brown the exterior. Finally you bake at a much lower temperature again to finish off the process of baking the eclairs. It is important to cool them completely before filling the eclairs with the pastry cream.

 

I used a Rose-Raspberry flavor combination for the whipped pastry cream. Also, I folded heavy whipped cream into the pastry cream to create a lighter airy texture on the inside of the eclair and the outside. I wanted the dessert to be a lighter version and I was very happy with the end result.

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The flavors from the rose petals and rose water, and also the raspberry puree were absolutely divine in the pastry cream! It gave it a beautiful depth of flavor, and femininity to this delicate french pastry. I kept the decoration on the top as well, simple and elegant. A beautiful dessert to make for the woman who single handedly manages so many things – MOM.

 

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I have adapted the recipe from the one and only Thomas Keller’s book Bouchon Bakery, based on my attempts with the eclairs. It is a stunning cookbook and one of my favorites. The details in the book are impeccable, and I have made a few recipes from this book, and all have turned out fantastic. The techniques in the book are beautifully described, detailed and there are pictures to go along with the step by step techniques.

 

I hope you get to try this recipe, cause it is seriously wonderful!

 

Have a wonderful Mother’s Day to all the mothers celebrating.

XO

Amisha

 

Raspberry-Rose Pastry Cream filled Eclairs

Ingredients

  • Adapted from Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery Cookbook
  • Pate a Choux:
  • 1 ¼ cups all purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • Adapted from Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery Cookbook
  • Raspberry-Rose Whipped Pastry Cream:
  • 4 egg yolks
  • ½ + 2 tbsp cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup culinary dried rose petals
  • 1 tbsp rose water
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • DECORATION:
  • small pale pink pearls
  • Freeze dried raspberry powder

Instructions

  1. RASPBERRY-ROSE WHIPPED PASTRY CREAM:
  2. Adapted from Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery Cookbook
  3. Setup an ice bath. Place a medium bowl in ice water and set a fine mesh strainer over the bowl.
  4. In a high speed blender, puree the raspberries to a pulp. Strain the pulp through a fine mesh strainer, to remove all the seeds.
  5. On medium to low heat, in a small saucepan, add the milk and rose petals, and warm till it reaches about 170 degrees F for about 5 minutes. Let the mixture sit.
  6. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the egg yolks. Whisk fast till the egg yolks are slightly frothy. Add in the granulated sugar. Whisk for about 3 minutes until the mixture is pale yellow and thick. When the whisk is lifted, the mixture should form a slowly dissolving ribbon.
  7. At this point, strain the milk to remove the rose petals. Press the rose petals against the strainer to extract as much flavor off them. Add in the raspberry puree and whisk to combine.
  8. Reduce the speed to low, and add the all purpose flour and mix for 20 seconds. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. With the mixer running on the lowest speed, slowly pour in the milk. Scrap the bowl again and mix on low speed for another minute or until combined.
  9. Pour the mixture into a large saucepan, set over medium heat, and stir gently until it begins to thicken. Switch to a whisk and whisk as the cream comes to a simmer. Once you see the bubbles breaking the surface, cook for about 5 minutes longer, whisking constantly, until the pastry cream has thickened.
  10. Pour the pastry cream through the strainer, pressing gently on it to push the thickened cream through. Whisk for about 1 minute to cool slightly, then whisk in the butter. Now add in the vanilla extract and rose water and whisk again to combine.
  11. Pour into a covered container and press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate for atleast an hour.
  12. When ready to use, transfer to a bowl and stir gently until it has a creamy consistency.
  13. To make it light, whip 1 cup of heavy whipping cream in a stand mixer with a whisk attachment for about 1 ½ minutes. Gently fold the heavy whipped cream into the pastry cream to form a light mixture.
  14. Fill a pastry bag with HALF of the whipped pastry cream(with a ¼ inch plain tip). Fill another pastry bag with the remaining HALF of the whipped pastry cream(with a wave tip for the top of the éclair).
  15. PATE A CHOUX:
  16. Adapted from Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery Cookbook
  17. Combine the flour and sugar in a small bowl. Combine the water, butter and salt in a medium saucepan, place over medium heat, and stir as the butter melts. Once the butter has melted, increase the heat to medium-high and bring ot a summer, then remove the pan from the heat and, with a stiff heatproof or wooden spoon, stir in all of the flour mixture. Continue to stir for about 2 minutes, or untl the mixture has a paste-like consistency, then place over medium heat and stir rapidly for 1 or 2 minutes, until the dough pulls away from the sides of the pan and the bottom of the pan is clean; the dough should be glossy and smooth but not dry.
  18. Immediately transfer the dough to the mixer bowl and mix on low for about 30 seconds to release some of the moisture. Slowly begin adding the eggs about 3 tbsp at a time, beating until each addition is completely absorbed before adding the next one. Continue adding the eggs, until the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl when pulled with the paddle but then grabs back on again.
  19. Increase the speed to medium and mix for 15 seconds to be sure all of the eggs are incorporated. Stop the mixer. When the paddle is lifted, the dough should form a bird’s beak – it should hold its shape and turn down over itself but not break off.
  20. Use a ½ inch French tip in the pastry bag to pipe the eclairs. The lines that the French tip creates a pretty pattern on the éclair and gives it a nice crispy edge too.
  21. Transfer the dough to a pastry bag, use a bench scraper to scrap the dough all the way to the bottom and refrigerate until cold for an hour before using to pipe eclairs.
  22. Position the racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Place a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spray with baking spray on the sheet. You could also use a Silpat mat instead of the parchment paper. You will be able to pipe 6 6-inch eclairs, 2 inches apart. Draw the template of 6 lines on the parchment paper.
  23. PIPE AND BAKE ECLAIRS:
  24. Starting at the side of the Silpat farthest from you, hold the tip of the pastry bag ¾ inch above the Silpat and apply gentle, steady pressure as you pipe the first éclair. When the éclair is about 6 inches long, being to lessen the pressure, and then stop it as you bring the dough back over itself. It will form a curl on the top at the end of the éclair. Pipe 5 more eclairs on the Silpat. Repeat on a second baking sheet with a parchment paper/Silpat. Wet your finger and press down the tip of each éclair, then spray them lightly with water. Place the sheet pans in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
  25. Lower the temperature to 350 degrees and bake for another 30 minutes. Lower the temperature for 325 degrees and bake for another 15 minutes, until golden brown, and they feel hollow. If you break one open, the center should be completely cooked. Set on a cooling rack and cool completely before filling or freezing.
  26. TO FILL THE ECLAIRS:
  27. With the ¼ inch plain tip, poke 2 holes, 1 ½ inches in from each end, into the bottom of each éclair. Place the tip of the pastry bag into one hole and apply gentle pressure to begin filling the éclair with pastry cream.(You may begin to see the pastry cream through the second hole; this is okay). Pipe cream as needed into the second hole, until the éclair feels heavy. Repeat for all the eclairs.
  28. TO DECORATE THE TOP:
  29. Use a wave pastry tip, to wave a continuous pattern on the top. Add 1-2 raspberries on the top, on one end of the eclair. Dust freeze dried raspberry powder on the top to cover 1/3 of the éclair where the raspberry is placed. You could add a couple of shiny pale pink balls to decorate too.
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