Monday, August 27, 2012

Daring Bakers' August Challenge - Filled Pate a Choux

Kat of Bobwhites was our August 2012 Daring Baker hostess who inspired us to have fun in creating pate a choux shapes, filled with crème patisserie or Chantilly cream. We were encouraged to create swans or any shape we wanted and to go crazy with filling flavors allowing our creativity to go wild!

So call me a little lacking in creativity. I didn't make any beautiful swans, darling turtles or cute-as-a-bug ladybugs, as I saw some of my truly daring Daring Baker colleagues do. Instead, I went for the traditional cream puffs and eclairs. But, believe you me, they were just as delicious in these ordinary forms as they would have been shaped like two romantic swans with their graceful necks entwined.

I suppose I might have ONLY done cream puffs had it not been for my granddaughter, Clara. Remembering our "girls night out" over a year ago, and her first taste of eclairs (we called them "e-claras", in her honor) has made them more meaningful to me, so I had to include a few of them in my batch.

Clara's first taste on our girls night out in 2011!

I tried to make these delights as lactose-free as possible, since I am pretty sure that I've recently developed an intolerance. So the pastry cream filling, at least, was made with an adapted recipe using lactose-free milk. I thought it would be a shame to make them and not be able to enjoy them myself! The pate a choux (the puff pastry dough) did have butter in it, but I thought I might be able to fudge a little bit.

And here they are, in all of their puffy glory! I only wish Clara had been here to help me enjoy a homemade-by-grandma e-clara :-) They really were delicious.


What's for dessert? said...

Looks delicious! I love eclairs!

Heather said...

Can't beat good cream puffs and eclairs and yours certainly look delicious. Cheers from Auckland New Zealand

Renata said...

Your cream puffs and eclairs look like they came from a French Boulangerie! Absolutely fantastic!
And that photo of Clara speaks for itself :)

Nichole said...

That "first eclair" picture is a riot. That's how I feel every time I eat an eclair, too! Your cream puffs and eclairs are gorgeous!

Kim said...

How wonderful that you made e-claras! What a great story thank you for sharing. As for "just" making puffs, some of your little puffs look like little chicks.. So maybe you did make some swans before they grew into thier beauty. They all look delicious!

shelley c. said...

That is so sweet that this challenge was reminiscent of such a sweet story. I love the e-claras! :) Great job!!

Korena said...

That photo of Clara's first taste is fantastic! I bet she would have loved your versions :)