Here is a classic chocolate eclair filled with vanilla cream. If it were a donut fan you might recognize it by the name boston cream. There is something comforting about having a little chocolate paired with custard and of course a little carb. Sometimes there is nothing better than a classic recipe and in this case a delicious pastry. Have it for breakfast, or in the middle of the day with a coffee. Doesn’t really matter when you have it because it all tastes great going down. To me the pate a choux dough is one of the easiest to make and very versatile. You can bake it, fry it, or steam it or boil it. In this recipe it is simply baked, filled with custard, and topped with chocolate. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Pate a choux dough (cream puff dough)

1 cup of flour

1 cup of milk

1 stick of butter

2 tsp of sugar

1/4 tsp of salt

4 eggs

Pastry cream

2 cups milk

1/2 cup of sugar

1 vanilla bean

4 egg yolks

1/4 cup of corn starch

2 tbsp of butter

pinch of salt

Chocolate mirror glaze

Gelatin 10 grams

Sugar 210 grams

Water 110 grams

Cocoa powder 65 grams

Heavy cream 65 grams

Dark chocolate 50 grams

For the Eclairs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees, In a small pot add milk (or corn juice), butter, sugar, and salt. Bring to a simmer. As soon as the butter has completely melted stir in the flour with a wooden spoon and turn down the heat to low. Incorporate all the flour thoroughly and cook for about 1 minute. Transfer the dough to a stand mixer with a paddle attachment. Turn on medium speed for a minute and then turn down to low speed. Crack the four eggs into a measuring cup and add them to the dough one at a time. Make sure the egg completely incorporates before adding the next egg. Continue until all the eggs have been added. Then take the dough and place in a pastry bag fitted with a french star tip. On a sheet pan lined with parchment paper pipe small straight lines of the dough. ( if you have any parts of the dough that sticks up you can wet your finger with water and push it down without it sticking to you or looking bad) Once the sheet pan is full of the eclair shapes, place in the oven and immediately turn down to 350 degrees bake for about 30-35 minutes until light brown. Then turn down the oven to 325 and bake for another 15 minutes. Take out and let them cool completely.

For the Pastry Cream,

Scald the milk and vanilla bean in a medium sauce pot. Turn off the heat when the milk starts to a boil. Beat the egg yolks and sugar in a food set to high, until the eggs and sugar form pale white ribbons. Add the flour to the eggs and beat for 30 seconds. Temper the eggs by whisking in one ladle of milk at a time until all the milk is incorporated with the egg and flour mixture. Place the egg mixture back onto low heat and whisk continually to thicken the pudding. Allow about 10-12 minutes, but don't boil. Once it has thickened finish by whisking in the cold butter. Pour the pudding into a bowl through a fine mesh strainer. Place a piece of plastic wrap on the surface of the pudding so it doesn't form a skin, place in the refrigerator. Leave the vanilla bean in the pudding until everything has cooled, then discard the bean.

For the Mirror Glaze

In a small bowl bloom gelatin powder in 3 tbsp of water. Place sugar, water, cocoa powder, and cream in a pot and turn on medium heat. Stir regularly until it comes to a boil. Then add in the chocolate. Stir until completely combined. Then add in the gelatin and stir until smooth. You can use the glaze immediately if you want but I found that I needed it too cool a bit because if it is too hot you have to glaze the tops multiple times or else the glaze will be too thin on top of the glaze. So I allowed it to cool almost to the point where it thickens ups but doesn’t set.

To Finish,

Cut the eclairs in half lengthwise, then take a pastry bag with a plain tip and fill with pastry cream. Pipe pastry cream to fill the bottoms of each eclair. Then take the tops and dip in the chocolate glaze (you can place them on a rack to dry slightly. Then place the tops carefully on top of the pastry cream filled eclairs. Top with cocoa nibs if desired. Place in the refrigerator for at least an hour. Serve and enjoy!

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