Want to make a fancy dessert, a yummy dessert and a yet an easy dessert? How about cream puffs? Growing up, I was always thrilled when my Mom made cream puffs, and she made them fairly often. They look so pretty and some people shy away from them because they think they are difficult to make, but in reality they are quite easy. They take only four basic ingredients, well five with the water!
Cream puffs are very versatile…they can be made sweet or savory by your choice of filling. They can be made beautiful by the garnishes you use! You can fill them with cream filling, pudding, ice cream. Top them with chocolate, confectioner’s sugar, fruit glaze or sauce. Wouldn’t they be lovely for a brunch or luncheon, filled with your favorite chicken or crab salad? Size is also an option. You can make your puffs large or small, whatever you prefer.
I have been toying with the idea of making “Coffee” Cream Puffs. I searched around for ideas and came up with my own recipe. Try it and let me know what you think. Too much sugar, not enough? My first try I used no sugar in the filling, but I think it needs just a little.
1/2 c butter
1 c water
1/4 t salt
1 c flour
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
In a 3 qt pot, bring water and butter to a rolling boil.
Add flour and salt all at once and stir until mixture comes away from the sides of pot and forms a ball.
Take pot from stove and let cool for 10 minutes. (The reason you want to let it cool a bit, is so the egg does not start to cook when added to hot ingredients)
Add eggs, one at a time, beating vigorously after each egg. This can be done with a wooden spoon if you want to use a lot of arm muscle, but is easiest using an electric mixer.
Drop mixture by tablespoonfuls onto a greased baking sheet, leaving 2 inches between puffs.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, until golden. A trick that my mother taught me was to turn the oven “off” and let the puffs sit in the oven for another half hour, to dry them out.
Makes about 10 large puffs.
Using a sharp knife (serrated works well), cut the tops from the puff. Scoop filling into puff, replace top and finish with chocolate drizzle.
Refrigerate until serving.
1 pint (2c) heavy cream
2-3 t instant coffee granules
2-4 T sugar (white sugar or confectioner’s sugar) I prefer confectioners.
1 t vanilla
In a medium bowl, add coffee granules to heavy cream. Add vanilla and sugar and whip mixture with a hand mixer for a few minutes until soft peaks form. Once soft peaks form stop mixing, do not over mix.
1 c confectioner’s sugar
3 T cocoa (regular or dark cocoa)
1 t vanilla
Place first three ingredients Into a small bowl, (or a 2 cup measuring cup with spout for easy pouring).
Using a fork, mix ingredients and then using the fork slowly add a small amount of hot water. I never measure, but I would say start with a tablespoon and continue to add just a tiny amount at a time until you get the right consistency. Using hot water will make the mixture thin and drizzle easily and then set to a firmness very quickly. Using a spoon or pouring spout, drizzle mixture onto the filled puffs.
Make your chocolate drizzle just before you plan to use it, for easy pouring/drizzling.
Of course you could buy chocolate and melt it, but making your own chocolate drizzle is cheaper and very easy!