Monday, November 12, 2007
PASTRY CLASS cream puffs and tarts
Okay. So this class was one I have to say I was not looking forward to. I am not really an eclair or cream puff kinda lady. At a bakery I will always opt for something else...usually less classic. Now I don't know if the next time I am presented with a PATE A CHOUX pastry I will go for it or not, but I had THE MOST FUN making these lil cuties.
It is a pretty long process and you need patience for the piping but once they are done, you realize it's not that big a project. We boiled water and butter then dumped in flour to make the pate a choux. The pastry cream is basically your classic custard recipe. Add a bit of ganache and you have choc pastry cream. I am sure there are many variations. The little guys are dipped in fondant icing. The big ones filled with pastry cream then whipped cream. Oh so delicious! The tarts were made with a nut paste called frangipan. We used almond frangipan but walnut and pecan are popular too I guess. The tarts did not look too great to me but once I tasted them.....LOOKOUT. Good God! They were the perfect kiss of light almond confection accented with the various fruits and nuts we topped them with. Pate sucree dough and piped frangipan filling are easy to make and easy to freeze! Who knew. The only problem is they are waaaaaay to easy to eat..
The top picture is of an idea i had during class...."can we make gruyere puffs?" Chef Jeff said "sure". A bit of salt pepper and um, a lot of gruyere added to the pate a choux and you have the perfect snack to go with some wine before dinner... or a delicate vessel for a wild mushroom mixture..or....