I was very excited to discover that my local pâtissière, Stèphane Glacier, is giving pastry classes just 10 minutes away from my home. It is almost impossible to pass by his boutique without stopping for a moment to appreciate the beautiful cakes. I signed up for several classes that will take place throughout the year. My first class was on the puff pastry (pâte à choux). There was eight of us and the chef. The class was organized very well: the recipe demonstration by the chef was followed by the practical session, with every student having his/her own working station.
Here are the recipes that we were using for the dough and different creams. Enjoy!
Puff dough (la pâte à choux)
- 125 g water
- 125 g whole milk
- 2 g salt
- 12 g sugar
- 100 g butter
- 150 g flour
- 250 g eggs (at room temperature)
Mix together water, milk, salt, sugar, and butter in a medium size pot and bring the mixture to the boil. When it starts to boil remove from fire and add flour, stir until a homogeneous mass is obtained. Put back on fire to dry out the dough until it no longer sticks to the sides of the pot. Put the dough into the mixing bowl. With the mixer on slow speed, gradually add eggs. Fill the pastry bag with dough and squeeze the desired shape (round for chouquettes and long for éclaires). Bake for 5 min at 200°C, then decrease temperature to 160°C and continue baking for another 20-25 min.
Custard (la crème pâtissière)
- 250 g whole milk
- 60 g egg yolks
- 60 g sugar
- 20 g corn flour (maizena)
- 20 g butter
- ½ vanilla pod
Heat the milk, 30 g of sugar and ½ vanilla pod (cut in halves and seeds scraped out). Whip eggs with remaining 30 g of sugar, add corn flour. When the milk starts boiling, add eggs and keep on fire for about 2 min. Remove from fire, add butter. Put on the plate and cover with a plastic film. Let it cool down.
Diplomate cream (la crème diplomat)
60% of custard + 40% whipped cream
Salted caramel cream (le caramel fleur de sel)
- 100 g sugar
- 50 g cream
- 60 g butter
- a pinch of sea salt
On slow fire melt the sugar until obtaining caramel. Add boiling cream and salt. Add butter. Stir everything together. Put the cream on the plate to cool down.
We made different types of pastries combining the puff dough and the above creams. I need to admit that I was quite satisfied with the results. Also, my husband said that my pastries look just like from pâtisserie, which I take as a compliment 🙂
Caramel mini-éclaires: garnished with 80% custard + 20% salted caramel cream
Chou chouquette: garnished with diplomat cream
Chou with whipped cream and strawberries: garnished with custard and whipped cream + decorated with strawberries
Image: ©2016 Peachtree Alley