Today I made Choux pastry and it was amazingly easy, I am really pleased to have finally taught myself this kind of pastry work as their is so much I can make now. Eclairs, Profiteroles and ...Choux buns with raspberries and cream!! That is what I made today, with some bargain raspberries from Leicester market, I thought after an overdose of chocolate from Easter a light fruit dessert would be nice.
Choux pastry is a very light pastry quite unlike any other. It is made by boiling water and butter together in a saucepan then beating in flour and, when its cooled eggs. The high water content of the dough is what causes it to rise as there is a lot of steam created inside the dough when it is cooked. The pastry is usually baked but can be fried and in Austria is sometimes boiled to make Marillenknödel a kind of sweet dumpling.
I made my pastry into make buns using a homemade piping bag made from a freezer bag with the corner cut off (good tip) to pipe buns onto a lined baking sheet (they expand a lot so it is important to space them well to avoid them touching). They were baked for half an hour and came out perfect! It is important with choux pastry to put them on a cooling rack immediately after they are cooked and to pierce them to let the steam out, otherwise you end up with soggy buns!
My choice of filling was very simple... Lightly whipped cream and raspberries folded together. I added a couple of teaspoons of sugar with the cream to offset the sharpness of the raspberries and spooned to mixture into the centre of the buns which had been split open, a light dusting of icing sugar finishes them off nicely.I think these look really professional and are far nicer than anything from the supermarket, the fillings could easily be changed, the only limit is your imagination, savoury fillings would also be good and the pastry has a multitude of other uses, you could fry it for beignets make crullers or it can be used for gougères which I intend to try soon.