Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Cream Puffs

These have been researched and experimented with for many years by Gram, so here they are in all of their perfection!!

(our experimentation: milk/water, hand/mixer--led to a WHOLE bunch of cream puffs!)

I really can't ever believe how simple they are, ingredient wise. She has experimented with the merits of water versus milk, and says water works just as great. In the last few years, she has started to use a mixer after combining the final ingredients, and showed us how much of a difference this makes in the "puff" part of the cream puff. Try your hand at these!

(Ours of course are not as perfect as hers, but our attempt:)

Cream Puffs

1 cup water
1/2 cup butter
4 eggs, room temperature
1 cup all purpose flour

Preheat oven to 400 F.
Bring water and butter to a rolling boil.
Stir in the flour all at the same time. Keep stirring over low heat until it comes together in a ball (pulls away from the sides), about 1 minute.
Remove pan from heat and immediately put dough in mixer bowl.
Using a mixer, beat in eggs one at a time (don't want to scramble the eggs!!).
Beat mixture until it is smooth and velvety.
Drop from a spoon onto greased baking sheet, about three inches apart.
Bake until cream puffs are dry. Thump them on the bottom to see--they should sound like dense bread when you thump. Bake time for small puffs: 25 to 35 minutes; large puffs: 35 to 40 minutes
Remove puffs from oven and allow them to cool.

When puffs are cooled, cut off tops with a sharp knife. Remove the inner filament (the doughy strands). Fill with pudding or filling of your choice.

Replace tops, dust with confectioner's sugar, and serve! (best cold)

Makes 20 small puffs; 8 large puffs

She also reminded us how many possibilities there are with these...fill with chicken salad; add a little sugar when you add the flour and make a sweeter version; some people even put mashed potatoes, peas, and cheese in them!! (blech!!)

But these are totally meant to be filled with some sugar free lemon pudding (yes, it does exist!) and topped with some powdered sugar....or filled with some SF french vanilla pudding and topped with powdered sugar and chocolate sauce. YUM!!

Thanks again to G & G for coming to teach us the art of the puff!