When we used to live in Paris, as everybodyelse we were living near a great Boulangerie/ Patisserie. For traditional 4 heures on week ends ( Afternoon Snack) I usually stopped to buy a bag of Chouquette. Usually before I reached our apartment located on the 4rd floor without elevator, there was none chouquette left in the bag . So when I felt guilty because I knew that my boyfriend ( now Husband) could not taste them ( and God knows how he loves them he has a big Sweet tooth), I had to run down again to the Boulangerie/ Patisserie and buy another bag of Chouquettes. And for the second round I was good, when I arrived in front of our apartment the bag was still full. Joel would ask if I want some and I would say OK just one or two.....
Now leaving in Southern California where only Trader Joe's display nice desserts and time to time Vallee d'Brumes Pastry Shop, the only way to enjoy delicious desserts is to bake them!
This is why joining Daring Bakers was a great move!
Now I can make my own Chouquettes, it takes no time and everybody love them!
And when I make batches.... up to 30 puffs is pretty good...
Those little cloud puff are light, very versatile. You can use then savory or sweet. Just plain with Coarse Suagr on them or you can stuff them with Creme Chantilly, and top with chocolate sauce, you can make Profiteroles ( stuffed with Vanilla Ice cream) and topped with warm chocolate sauce, or you can stuff them with Blue cheese/ walnut for a great appetizers or Buffet Froid.
Here is the recipe of the cutest, round, light and beautiful name C-H-O-U-Q-U-E-T-T-E-S!
(About 25 Puffs)
Shaping the mounds of dough is easiest to do with a pastry bag, although you can use a teaspoon.
1 cup (250 ml) water1/2 teaspoon salt 2 teaspoons sugar 6 tablespoons (90 gr) unsalted butter, cut into small chunks1 cup (135 gr) flour4 large eggs, at room temperature
Glaze: 1 egg yolk, mixed with 1 teaspoon Coarse sugar is available in the US from Ikea.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees (220 C.) Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Heat the water, salt, sugar, and butter in a small saucepan, stirring, until the butter is melted. Remove from heat and dump all the flour in at once. Stir rapidly until the mixture is smooth and pulls away from the sides of the pan.
Allow dough to cool for two minutes, then briskly beat in the eggs, one at a time, until smooth and shiny.
Using a spoon, pastry bag make a mound of dough with one spoon roughly the size of a walnut and scrape it off with the other spoon onto the baking sheet.
Place the mounds evenly-spaced apart on the baking sheet. Brush the top of each mound with some of the egg glaze then press coarse sugar crystals over the top and sides of each mound. Use a lot. Once the puffs expand rise, you'll appreciate the extra effort (and sugar.)
Bake the cream puffs for 35 minutes, or until puffed and well-browned.
(If you want to make them crispier, you can poke a hole in the side with a wooden spoon after you take them out of the oven to let the steam escape.)
The cream puffs are best eaten the same day they're made.