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Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with vanilla cream
#Desserts
Heavenly

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with Vanilla Cream

Cream Puffs have a crunchy exterior and a light, creamy interior. Filled with rich vanilla cream and light whipping cream, perfect for any occasion.

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with Vanilla Cream
Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with Vanilla Cream are just the best cream puffs Jernej has even made. I would go as far as to say that these are the best I have ever eaten. Have you guys also noticed that cream puffs always take the center stage of any dessert table? I know, they are the kind of dessert you prepare for a whole wide range of celebrations: wedding, mother’s day, valentine’s day or birthday parties. Then we have holiday gatherings like Christmas, Easter, new year’s eve and well, you get where I am going with this. People seem to be making them for all kinds of occasions and we absolutely get why. So what is making these treats so special that they get the center stage everywhere they appear? In our case, I would say two reasons. First, there's their crunchy, beautiful, dynamic exterior that’s not classic for cream puffs. These have a very special and tasty bonus called Craquelin. That results in a beautiful crunchy, symmetrical exterior that’s not just super delicious, but incredibly beautiful, festive and aesthetic too. Secondly, it’s a combination of creams. We have a rich Vanilla Cream and light whipping cream with mascarpone. The preparation is sleek. Bake the choux pastry with Craquelin, fill the baked choux buns with Vanilla Cream, then pipe the Mascarpone Whipped Cream on top. Finish by decorating your cream puffs with candied sour cherries and chopped pistachios. That’s it, time to amaze your loved ones with your new, homemade creation.


How to make Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin)?

Choux Pastry - Prepare homemade choux pastry, it’s the best and super easy to make. There’s no sugar added and when baked, they are nice, golden brown and hollow inside - perfect for that rich cream.

Craquelin - Craquelin is a nice bonus that takes this dessert to a whole other level. Because of the Craquelin, the exterior of these cream puffs is beautifully cracked and crunchy. A wonderful contrast to the cream. Craquelin also helps the choux pastry bake evenly and symmetrical, making it beautiful and symmetrical.

Vanilla Cream - Make homemade pastry cream, then add the rest of the ingredients to make this rich, homemade vanilla cream that’s just perfect. Creamy, luscious and soft.

Mascarpone Whipped Cream - Love this cream. Whipped cream, sugar and mascarpone. This is such a light, yet fresh and compact cream. You could leave mascarpone out, but that would be just sad. Mascarpone adds a much-needed freshness and it also helps the cream to stay firm.

Decor - You can get super creative and make all kinds of decorations. We made these in the Christmas time, so we kept it nice and simple, yet festive, adding candied sour cherries and chopped pistachios. You could also drizzle cream puffs with melted chocolate or sprinkle with icing sugar, decorate with sugar hearts for Valentine’s day or add sprinkles for the kids birthday. The possibilities are endless.

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with vanilla cream

 

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with vanilla cream

 

What pastry tip to use for choux pastry? 

Use a round or star 1 cm / 1/2- inch pastry tip, this way you will get a nice shape.

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with vanilla cream

 

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with vanilla cream

 

What is craquelin?

Craquelin is a sweet crispy topping that makes the exterior of these cream puffs beautifully cracked, crispy and crunchy. This way it creates a wonderful contrast to the cream in the puffs. Craquelin also helps the choux pastry bake evenly and symmetrical, making it beautiful and symmetrical.

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with vanilla cream

 

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with vanilla cream

 

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with vanilla cream

 

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with vanilla cream

 

Can you make cream puffs in advance?

Cream Puffs are best served fresh. However, you can prepare a lot of this in advance. Bake the choux pastry dough with Craquelin day in advance. You can also prepare all the creams one day in advance - keep them chilled in a refrigerator. Assemble right before serving to get the best possible result and praise for your hard work.

How do you make cream puff filling?

A lot of times, you will see vanilla pudding written in the ingredient list for cream puffs. We recommend making your own vanilla sauce. It’s super easy and the end result is incomparably better and tastier. We use two creams in this recipe, a simple, rich vanilla cream (made with pastry cream) and a fresh mascarpone whipped cream.

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with vanilla cream

 

Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin) with vanilla cream

 

How long will cream puffs keep?

As mentioned above, the cream puffs are best served fresh. You can store them in a fridge for one day.

Should cream puffs be refrigerated? Can I freeze cream puffs?

Yes, refrigerate cream puff can store them in a fridge for one day.

No, you can’t freeze them, because they would get moist and soggy when you would want to defrost them. Also, the creams would get all lumpy. You could prepare the choux pastry in advance and freeze it. Check the recipe here.

 

Lets get cooking!

ONLY A FEW MOMENTS SPENT IN THE KITCHEN AND YOU WILL HAVE THIS FANTASTIC DISH IN FRONT OF YOU.
  • makes
    16
    cream puffs
  • preparation:
    30
    minutes
  • rest:
    60
    minutes
  • bake:
    40
    minutes
  • total time:
    130
    minutes

METHOD

  • Pastry cream

    First, make the pastry cream. Click on the “pastry cream” link in the ingredients list and follow the instructions.

  • Vanilla cream

    In a bowl whip together whipping cream and sugar to get soft peaks. Place the cooled pastry cream to a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment or place in a large bowl. Beat for about a minute. Gently fold in (in thirds) the whipped cream. Don’t overwork it. The cream must be nice and light. Transfer vanilla cream to a piping bag, fitted with a round pastry tip, and keep chilled in a refrigerator until ready to pipe onto choux puffs.

  • Craquelin

    In a clean bowl of a stand mixer or using an electric mixer beat the butter, packed light brown sugar, and icing sugar. Add the all-purpose flour and mix until the flour is completely incorporated. Flatten the dough and transfer to a sheet of parchment paper. Cover the dough with another sheet of parchment paper and roll to 2 mm / 5/64 ″ thickness using a rolling pin. Transfer to large baking sheet and freeze until needed.

  • Choux pastry

    Make the choux pastry. Click on the “choux pastry” link in the ingredients list and follow the instructions until the baking step.

  • choux pastry

    Transfer choux pastry dough to a pastry bag fitted with a star pastry (1 cm / 1/2 inch) tip. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Pipe out 12 choux mounds, about 5 cm / 2-inches round, onto the prepared baking sheets. Evenly space them apart to prevent touching during baking. Using a water-moistened finger, smooth down the peaks. Preheat the oven to 190°C / 375°F.

  • Craquelin and Choux Pastry

    Remove the Craquelin from the freezer and cut 16 circles (5 cm / 2-inches) round from the dough. Place each Craquelin circle on top of the choux mound.

  • Bake

    Place the baking sheet (bake in two rounds) in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes at 190°C / 375°F in a regular oven or for 20 minutes at 180°C / 355°F in a convection oven. Then, open the oven door to release the steam, close the door and bake for another 15 - 20 minutes at 170°C / 340°F in a regular oven, or for about 15 - 20 minutes at 160°C / 320°F in a convection oven. Baked choux buns will be golden brown and beautiful outside and nice, baked inside. Remove from oven and set on cooling rack to cool.

  • Mascarpone Whipped Cream

    In a bowl mix together whipping cream, sugar and vanilla seeds until you get nice, soft peaks, using an electric mixer. In a separate clean bowl beat the mascarpone using an electric mixer. Gradually (in thirds) fold in the whipped cream to get a nice, glossy mixture. Transfer mascarpone whipped cream to a piping bag, fitted with a star pastry tip, and keep chilled in a refrigerator until ready to pipe onto choux puffs.

  • Assemble and Serve

    Assemble: Using a serrated knife, cut 1/3 of the top off each choux bun. Set the cut tops aside. Pipe the vanilla cream into the shell until 3/4 full. Repeat the filling process with each choux puff. Pipe two swirls of the mascarpone whipped cream on top, reserving a bit of cream to decorate the tops later. Place the cut top on top of the mascarpone whipped cream and decorate each cream puff with a small swirl of mascarpone whipped cream, half candied sour cherry and chopped pistachios or however you desire. Choux puffs are best enjoyed the same day. Store in a fridge for up to a day.

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