Melt butter in water - bring to a boil. Add salt (tip: don't add salt till water boils to avoid pitting your stainless pans). Add flour all at once and stir like crazy. Don't panic. The mixture will get quite lumpy and sticky. Reduce heat to low and stir for one minute. Do not skip this step. This allows the flour to absorb absolutely every drop of water possible and the rest to evaporate. Remove from heat and transfer to a mixing bowl. Let cool approximately 5 minutes or until you can touch the dough without letting out a holler! Add one egg at a time and stir until dough absorbs it completely. Do not add them all at once. When you are through, your dough should be smooth and will form a "V" shape as the excess drops away when you pull the spoon up out of it.
You can either pipe it into 3 inch eclair shapes using a pastry bag or use a small scoop to form 1 1/2 inch balls for a cream puff look. Either way, use a greased sheet pan or use a silpat and keep them at least 2 inches apart. They will get much larger and they need space! Each one holds a great deal of moisture that causes steam which will ruin the guy next to him and they'll be mushy instead of nice and crisp.
Bake for 30 minutes at 400 degrees. Do not peek, you'll ruin them! They need privacy!
The eggs cause the dough to form a really nice hollow middle that just screams to be filled with something gooey! We use sugar free instant pudding. Just add 1 1/2 cups of milk instead of 2. That way your filling won't be too runny. Banana and cheesecake seem to be the favorites around here as well as chocolate. Most people use vanilla for eclairs but that's so "expected!"
For a nice topper, you can melt Nutella with a small amount of milk to make a hazelnut ganache to drizzle over the tops. Or, if you're in a pinch for time, you can just melt a can of frosting in the micro! These are also really great cut in half, filled with ice cream and served with chocolate topping and whipped cream. Woah mamma!
I also like to slice them in half and fill them with chicken or tuna salad. They make incredibly delicious and beautiful sandwiches to serve with your favorite soups or salads! Everyone is always so impressed when I say I made them myself. Enjoy!