Sunday, October 21, 2012

gougeres and profiteroles.

Grougeres/Profiteroles from Shalee:

Pate a Choux:

1 cup water
1 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons sugar
6 tablespoons butter, cut in pieces
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour, sifted
4 eggs, beaten

In a small saucepan over high heat, bring the water, salt, sugar, and butter to a boil, making sure the butter is completely melted. Off the heat, add the flour all at once and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon. Return to the heat and continue beating until the dough forms a solid, smooth mass and pulls away from the sides of the saucepan.

Take off the heat and empty the dough into a clean mixing bowl and let cool a bit so that the dough doesn't cook your eggs. Little by little add the beaten eggs, beating vigorously in between each addition, until the dough forms a smooth, supple mass (This can be done by hand although I do it in my stand mixer).

Divide the dough into 2 even quantities, 1 part to be used for the gougeres, the other for profiteroles.

The dough is ready at this point to make the profiteroles. Just pipe onto cookie sheet (approximately the size of a silver dollar) lined with parchment paper or silpat mat and bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Once cooled, cut the tops off and serve with icre cream or whipped cream, fruit, chocolate sauce, etc. Can brush the tops prior to cooking with an egg wash for a glossy finish.

1/2 recipe Pate a Choux, recipe above (if you do not want to make profiteroles and wish to use the entire dough for gougeres just double the cheese below)

 1/2 cup grated Gruyere (I used Jarlsberg but if is fun to experiment with different cheeses and spices. I also like to add garlic, chives, greent onion, etc.

Freshly cracked black pepper

1 egg, beaten

Special Equipment: pastry bag fitted with a #10 star tip, baking sheet, parchment paper, pastry brush (I just use my cookie scoop or put it in a large ziplock baggie and cut the corner)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
In a small mixing bowl, add the grated cheese and plenty of freshly cracked black pepper to the half-recipe of pate a choux. With a rubber spatula, scoop the pate a choux into the pastry bag and pipe out approximately 25 (1-inch) rounds, spaced 1 to 2 inches apart on the parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Brush lightly with the beaten egg and place in the oven. Cook until golden and puffed, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool briefly on a baking rack. Serve hot or at room temperature.

*After I do the egg wash I like to sprinkle a little cheese on the top.

Serving: The puffs are best served warm, and if making them in advance, you can simply pipe the gougères on baking sheets and cook right before your guests arrive, or reheat the baked cheese puffs in a low oven for 5-10 minutes before serving. Some folks like to fill them, or split them and sandwich a slice or dry-aged ham in there, although I prefer them just as they are.

Hints: These really are so easy so don't let the recipe scare you away. They seem to puff/stay puffed better when they are not too large. Also, make sure to beat your eggs in really well to give the pate a choux dough the elasticity it needs to really puff in the oven. Finally, make sure they are good and golden before removing them from the oven and try not to open the oven door at all until you are ready to remove them.

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