Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Cream Puffs

No, I'm not talking about the shoppers who wait until Christmas Eve to find the "perfect" gift. I'm talking about these beauties.

cream puff

If you want to have a delicious breakfast on Christmas morning, or better yet, something Santa can really sink his teeth into - try these.

Cream puffs aren't as hard as bakers would like you to believe they are. They do take several steps, but none of them are too difficult for you wonderful followers to accomplish.

Here's the recipe and directions. I just know your going to want to make them over and over and over again.

What you'll need for puffs:
1 cup water
1/2 cup stick butter
1 cup flour
4 large eggs

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Combine water and butter in a medium sized pan. Heat on the stove over medium heat until mixture comes to a full boil. Stir in the flour and reduce the heat to low. Stir until mixture forms a ball. It only takes about a minute. Remove from heat.

Add the eggs all at once and beat until smooth. Drop by 1/4 cupfuls on an ungreased cookie sheet.  You should get about a dozen. Bake for 35 minutes or until the puffs are golden. Allow to cool. Poke a hole in the side of the puff and fill with cream. (See recipe below) Frost with chocolate frosting or dust with powdered sugar. Keep 'em in the fridge - if you have any left.

Here's the deal. You could fill these with Jell-o pudding. But you really owe it to yourself to try making the cream from scratch. (Just this once) It is so much better than the box stuff. Also, it will help you when you go to make your first cream pie from scratch. The experience is good, but once you taste the results, you'll agree that the finished product is better.

What you'll need for cream:
2 large egg yolks slightly beaten
1/3 cup sugar
2 T cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk
2 T. butter
2 teaspoons vanilla

Mix eggs, sugar, cornstarch, salt and milk in a medium sauce pan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly so the bottom doesn't burn until mixture thickens and boils. (5-10 minutes) Boil for one minute. Remove from heat, stir in butter and vanilla. Cool in refrigerator.

What you'll need for chocolate frosting:
This is really more of a thick glaze.

2 T. butter melted
3 T. cocoa powder
1 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
dash of salt

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. If it is too thick you can add a teaspoon or two of milk. It shouldn't be runny. If it is, just add a little more powdered sugar.

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