I was SO excited to see this week’s French Fridays with Dorie recipe: Vanilla éclairs (p. 473). I love them but have never made them though I have had some success with the choux pastry before, making gougères and profiteroles, twice.
Neil and I had people over for dinner last Friday and totally unintentionally, it turned in to an all Dorie dinner..
(Excuse the iPhone photos and the plating – we were serving family-style!)
All these recipes were chosen because they had a lot of prep that could be done in advance. The éclairs seemed like the perfect dessert for this meal.. I was planning on making them the night before and Dorie gave me the go-ahead that they should be ok. Of course, I forgot that we would be cooking the ribs for 3+ hours so I ended up just planning to make the éclairs on the fly a couple of hours before the guests were due to arrive. I made the vanilla pastry cream (um, can I just say – YUM???) the night before and the chocolate glaze I was choosing to use as well. That cut down prep time on the night.
The thing with choux pastry is that even though I haven’t worked much with it, I do know what it’s supposed to look like. Slightly sloppy, not firm. My dough was perfect, I felt but because of my poor piping skills, the first batch of pastry I made that night (yes, you read it right) did not work very well for the éclairs – I used a piping tip that was too thin and my éclairs were a total flop – but was fine for tiny profiteroles which I ended up taking to another friend’s house the following day. I quickly whipped up some more choux pastry and piped wider, longer éclairs. Perfect!
I was pretty happy with how they turned out…
I admit I took a LOT of pictures of these. They were so delicious and I just couldn’t get over how “proper” they looked (I never trust my baking skills!). Many people enjoyed them…
If you’ve never made these, give them a go – if *I* can do this, so can you!
Want to join French Fridays with Dorie? Join here.
French Fridays with Dorie participants do not publish the recipes on our blogs, rather, we prefer if you purchase Around My French Table for yourselves (trust me, you definitely want this book!) which you can do here on Amazon or Amazon Canada. Go on, treat yourself – join us in 2011! There are some GREAT recipes coming up!
* Don’t forget to check out next month’s “Forever Nigella” event – I’m hosting a street party in honour of the Royal Wedding and would love for you to join me. All the details here.
** Like Cake Pops? Check out my giveaway here. Entries close at 6pm Monday April 17th.