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Archive for September, 2018

Eclairs

One of the top selling items at the bakery is the eclair. Next to the donut its the next best thing. With a flavorful hard outer shell and a soft center filled with pastry cream this sweet dessert is then  topped with chocolate…….. how can you go wrong

Shell (Pate a Choux) makes approximately 3 dozen eclairseclair
1 1/2 cup water
1 stick salted butter (1/2 cup)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
8 large eggs

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line 2 full size sheet pans with parchment paper.
In a medium sauce pan add the butter, water and sugar and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and add the flour all at one time. With a wooden spoon mix continuously until the dough forms and pulls away from the pan. Remove from the stovetop and place the dough into a standing mixer. Mix on high allowing the dough to cool for at least 5 minutes. (you do not want the eggs to cook when added) Slowly add the eggs one at a time when mixing until dough is smooth and all eggs are mixed. Transfer the dough to a pastry bag with a large 1/2 tip. Pipe long thick 2 1/2″ mounds onto the parchment paper (one way I keep the parchment paper down is to tack a small amount of dough under the parchment paper at the corners) Make them approximately 2″ apart. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350 for an additional 15 minutes. They should be golden brown. Allow them to completely cool before filling. They can also be frozen and filled at a later date.

Filling; Pastry Cream is the traditional filling, however you can fill them with just about anything you would like. Here is a pastry cream recipe

2 cups milk
1/4 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
1 egg
1/4 cup corn starch
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a medium sauce pan stir together the milk and 1/4 cup sugar, bring to a boil.
In a bowl which together the egg yolk and egg then stir in 1/3 cup sugar and cornstarch until smooth. Remove the milk mixture from the stovetop and slowly drizzle into the egg mixture while mixing so that the eggs do not cook at that point. Once incorporated return the mixture to the saucepan and bring to a boil while continuing to mix (you do not want to curdle the eggs. The mixture should thicken, remove from the stovetop and add in the butter and vanilla until completely blended. Pour into a heat safe bowl cover and cool in the refrigerator.

When the pastry cream is completely cold add to a pastry bag fitted with a filling tip. Insert the tip into each end of the eclair shell and fill with pastry cream. Return to the refrigerator.

Ganache Chocolate topping: this is easy to make, place one cup of heavy whipping cream into a small sauce pan and bring to a boil. Pour the cream over 9 ounces of bittersweet chopped chocolate and stir until melted. Allow to cool and thicken before drizzling or dipping onto your eclair

Enjoy
Chef Brian Klauss

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If you are ever in Florida stop in at Sonny’s BBQ and check out their Banana vanilla wafer desert. If my wife had to much of their fine BBQ she will eat this on the way home instead of the dinning room……..don’t forget to ask for a spoon or a fork, I’ve watched her struggle on the way home without one.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and prepare 2 – 9″ cake pans by spraying with vegetable spray and dusting with flour.

Vanilla Cake
1/2 cup of room temperature unsalted butterIMG_5978
1 1/2 cup sugar
4 eggs (room temperature)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3 cups of flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup Buttermilk (room temperature)

Butter cream frosting
4 cups powdered sugar
1 cup soften unsalted butter
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 – 3 tablespoons milk

Filling
1 – 4 serving box of instant vanilla pudding
3 bananas sliced

Coating
12 vanilla wafers (crushed finely)
10 for decoration

Make the instant Pudding following the package direction and refrigerate.
Cake; Mix the butter, vanilla extract and sugar and cream well, add in the eggs. Then mix the  remaining dry ingredients and the wet ingredients alternating until completely incorporated. (Do not over mix). Pour equal amounts of the batter into the prepared cake  pans and bake approximately 35 minutes. Allow to cool 10 minutes before removing onto a cooling rack. Frosting; butter cream frosting by first creaming the vanilla extract with the butter then slowly add in the powered sugar one cup at a time. Add in the milk until you achieve the proper consistency. Assemble; Once the cakes are completely cooled split both layers. Place a portion of the butter cream into a pastry bag and form a dam around the edge of the layers to fill. Add the vanilla pudding into each layer and place the slices of bananas. Stack each layer as you complete them. Frost the cake, press the vanilla wafer crumbs into the side of the cake and top and decorate with the remaining buttercream. Place the whole vanilla wafers on top for decoration.

Enjoy
Chef Brian Klauss

 

 

 

 

 

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