Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Recipe: Profiteroles

This week I read "Dragonwell Dead" by Laura Childs. It's the first of her mysteries that I've ever read; it was a decent enough read. She writes in the mystery sub-genre that seems to be all the rage these days, a "theme" series. Her mysteries are set in South Carolina and the protagonist owns a tea shop, thus, much of the story takes place around the theme of tea. Similar books would be the "Goldilocks Catering" mysteries and the "Grace and Favor" series.

In the back of the book, Ms. Childs provides several recipes for items that were mentioned in the book, and I tried one last night - profiteroles. That's just a fancy word for "cream puffs", y'all. But they were soooo easy and soooo good that I just have to share! Here's the recipe as it's written in the book, then I'll make my own notes:

1 cup milk
1/2 cup butter
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 large eggs

In a saucepan, bring milk and butter to a boil. While boiling, add flour all at once and stir rapidly until mixture forms a ball. Removed from heat and beat in eggs thoroughly, one at a time. Place heaping teaspoons of dough on a greased cookie sheet, about 2 inches apart. Bake for 20 minutes at 425 degrees, then reduce heat to 350 degrees and continue baking for 10 to 15 minutes, until puffs are well risen and dry. When cool, gently pull off the top and add your favorite filling.

When I made these last night, they were completely cooked in the 20 minutes at 425 degrees. The first batch, I did turn down to 350 degrees and let them cook for another couple of minutes, but my nose quickly told me that they were done. The second batch was completely done in the 20 minutes at 425, I took them out immediately because they were very, very brown.

These were SO good filled with ice cream for dessert last night. They would also be good with a hearty filling like chicken salad, scrambled eggs with toppings, etc. Westley and I spent a good hour last night dreaming up fillings for them!

One last note: these should be cooked, filled and served within a matter of hours. Don't make them the day ahead for an event. They're not horrible, but they absorb moisture really quickly and turn chewy instead of light and fluffy. They could possibly be made in the morning for an evening event, but I won't swear to that since I've only made them once. Oh, and I didn't count, but I think this made around 2 to 2 1/2 dozen at the size I made.


Silvia said...

Sounds delicious!

tegdirb92 said...

yum_- I have never made cream puffs but they sound delicious!!

Joanna said...

I always assumed it was difficult to make the "puff" for cream puffs... if it's this easy, I'll have try it!

kwrenb said...

I agree with Joanna, I thought these would be really hard to make - something best left to the bakery. Now I'm going to give it a try myself!