Recipe by Sgt. Pepper
Eclairs have many variations, but 3 basic components: Pate a choux, filling and icing. This recipe is filled with vanilla pastry cream and iced with chocolate ganache. The amount of everything that you make will depend on how many and how big the eclairs will be. The prep and cook times are misleading because you can do most of it simultaneously.
Top Review by SCURTISS1974
My mom used to make on occasion for us. She always made eclairs, filling, and chocolate topping from scratch, hardly referring to the recipe...gosh, I miss her eclairs.Thank you for the recipe and the memories.
Vanilla Pastry Cream
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 vanilla bean
- 2⁄3 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 6 egg yolks
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
Pate a Choux
- 1⁄2 cup water
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 3⁄4 cup flour
- 3 eggs (room temp)
Dark Chocolate Ganache
- 8 ounces chopped semisweet chocolate or 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
- 8 ounces heavy cream
Directions See How It's Made
- Pastry cream (Make a day ahead and up to a week ahead): Pour milk into saucepan, add scraped vanilla bean including pod.
- Sift cornstarch, flour and sugar into a bowl.
- Whisk egg yolks in another bowl.
- Add dry ingredients to egg yolk and whisk until smooth.
- Take yolk mixture, milk and butter to stove.
- Heat milk until just simmering, stir about 1/2 cup of milk into yolk mixture, pour yolk mixture into pan with milk and heat on med low until it comes to a boil.
- Stir constantly with wooden spoon.
- Let boil, stirring, for 1 minute.
- Turn off heat and stir in butter until completely melted and incorporated.
- Pour entire contents of pan thru a strainer into a shallow stainless bowl.
- Cover with plastic wrap, pressing directly on to cream.
- chill until cold and firm.
- Pate a Choux: Preheat oven to 375.
- Place water, butter, sugar and salt in heavy saucepan and bring to boil.
- Add flour all at once and stir until mixture comes away from sides and forms a ball.
- Remove from heat.
- Put mixture in mixer with a paddle and mix on low to cool to warm, not hot.
- Add eggs one at a time, beating well to incorporate each before adding the next.
- After last egg is added, beat until smooth.
- With a piping bag and round tip, pipe mixture on to a parchment lined sheet pan.
- You can make as big or as long as you want.
- They will about double in size when cooked.
- Bake at 375 until they become,brown, light and hollow.
- Dark Chocolate Ganache: Bring cream to a simmer.
- Pour over chopped chocolate, let sit for 2 minutes, stir until melted and smooth.
- Assembly: Take finished pate a choux and punch a hole in one end with something like a chop stick.
- Put pastry cream into a piping bag with a narrow round tip and squeeze cream into hole to fill up pate a choux.
- When ganache has cooled enough to leave tracks in itself when drizzled back into the bowl it is ready to use.
- Dip filled pate a choux into ganache to coat.