This year for my son’s birthday, I decided to make “choux a la creme” instead of a birthday cake.
Choux a la creme. It is a cream puff in English. I wonder why it sounds so much more posh when we use the French name.
They are my children’s favorite and I just wanted to see big smiles on their faces.
But there was a small problem. I had forgotten how to make them.
The lot I made on my son’s birthday didn’t turn out the way they should. I guess the dough was too thick and didn’t rise well. I changed the recipe a little and tried a few more times. And at the end, I found it isn’t the amounts of ingredients you use which matters, but how you cook it.
To make it simple, I use these ingredients.
Choux a la creme recipe
50g butter cut into small cubes
2-3 eggs at room temperature and beaten well
Place the water, butter in a pan and bring it to boil. When the water start sizzling and making small bubbles on the edge of the pan, add flour all in one go and stir vigorously. Soon the dough start coming off the base and shaping into a ball. Remove from the heat.
Add half the egg and cook over medium heat for 30 seconds, stirring vigorously. My pan conducts heat well so I do not heat too long. Soon the egg start cooperating with the dough and become a thick paste. Remove from the heat.
The key is you keep adding the egg to the mixture until you reach this point. Sometimes the dough cooks on its own heat and becomes too thick at the end. It is safe to have extra egg and keep adding until the paste achieve this thickness.
Bake them in a 190 C (370 F) preheated oven for 20 minutes, reduce to 180 C (350 F) and bake further 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave them in the oven for 5 minutes.
This is what I made yesterday.
I cannot tell you how pleased I was! I did it! Don’t they look nice?
I filled them with custard and whipped cream.
It doesn’t take much to make me a happy person.