You may remember that I made profiteroles for New Year’s Eve dinner, and to be honest it was so simple I wondered what all the fuss was about.
So for my lovely friend Alex’s hen party I decided to make chocolate éclairs – yum. We had a full on high tea so it was the ideal situation to show off.
I made the crème patissière the day before, all lovely and yellow and vanilla-y, and decided I would get up early on the day to make the pastry so the éclairs would be nice and fresh.
I used this recipe by Raymond Blanc as he’s supposed to be the king of all things pastry, the creme patissière was delicious but the éclairs were a total disaster, the paste looked good but they came out the oven completely flat and were unusable. At this point I had my usual tantrum and decided to make the scones to calm myself down.
After that I went back to trusty Delia for the choux pastry, you know where you are with Delia.
The second batch of pastry was the wrong consistency so I binned that without even cooking it but the third batch was perfect, they rose and came out of the oven a perfect golden brown (well, nearly – the oven doesn’t cook evenly!). The shape wasn’t bad either given that I had to use a sandwich bag to pipe them.
Unfortunately not having the correct piping equipment meant I had to make a slit in the side to fill them but you couldn’t tell and I made the glaze from a Rachel Allen recipe as it looked easier (and I had run out of time remaking the sodding pastry!).
Anyway in the end they were bloody amazing and everyone loved them – especially our beautiful hen, and that’s the main thing!
Obviously I had a shit load of egg whites left so I also made some meringues, we had some small, dainty ones for the afternoon tea and then my mother made the leftovers into this monster of a dessert for a dinner party.
It has a meringue base, then crème patissière, then fruit, cream, more fruit, mini meringues cemented with more crème patissière topped with a chocolate strawberry. Crazy I tell you.