Boston Cream Puffs
(can also be called Mini Eclairs, omit chocolate glaze for regular cream puffs)
Makes 12 puffs
For the dough –
1/4 + 1/2 cup whole milk, divided
1/4 cup water
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 2 pieces + 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, divided
1/2 tablespoon sugar (1.5 teaspoons)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, room temperature
For the pastry cream –
1 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
1 cup heavy cream
For the chocolate glaze –
1 ounce semi-sweet chocolate (chips or chocolate bar)
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1.5 tablespoons hot water
- To make the pastry cream – combined pudding mix, heavy cream, and 1/2 cup milk. Place in fridge to set.
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment paper.
- Bring 1/4 cup milk, water, 4 tablespoons butter, sugar, and salt to a rapid boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add all the flour at once, lower the heat to medium-low, and immediately start stirring with a heavy wooden spoon. The dough will come together, and a light crust forms on the bottom of the saucepan. Continue stirring for another minute or two to dry the dough. The dough should be very smooth.
- Turn the dough into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (A hand-mixer can also be used). Let the dough sit for a minute to cool down, then add the eggs one by one, beating thoroughly after each addition. (Tip: if you forgot to bring your eggs to room temperature before beginning the recipe, warm up water in a Tupperware container (or bowl) for 60 seconds or until very warm. Add eggs. and they should be room temperature within 15 minutes) Also, don’t worry if the dough falls apart at first; keep beating, and it will all come together.
- Using about 1 tablespoon of dough for each puff, drop the dough from a spoon onto the lined baking sheet, leaving about 2 inches between the mounds of dough.
- Slide the baking sheets into the oven and immediately turn down the oven to 375 degrees. Bake for 12 minutes, then rotate the pan around and bake for another 12-15 minutes, or until the puffs are golden and firm. Take out and allow to cool on a baking sheet.
- To assemble – take out chilled pastry cream, and place into a pastry bag or a large Ziploc bag. If using a Ziploc bag, simply cut off the tip of the edge of the bag. To fill the puffs; using a serrated knife and a gentle sawing motion, cut off the top quarter or third of the puff, fill the puffs, and top them with the little caps.
- To make the chocolate glaze – melt the chocolate and 1 tablespoon of butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Stir in powdered sugar and vanilla. Stir in hot water, a little at a time, and whisk until it gets to the correct drizzling consistency. Remove from heat, cool slightly, and drizzle onto each puff. Cool in fridge until pastries are cold and glaze has set.