An Eclair is long pastry made with a basic choux dough that is then baked, filled with cream and topped with a rich layer of chocolate. Although they look like a difficult dessert to prepare, they’re actually quite easy!
This recipe creates delicious eclairs from a basic choux pastry dough of water, flour, butter, and eggs. Choux dough is the basis for many pastries such as French Crullers, beignets, and more.
The difference between a choux pastry and a puff pastry is that puff pastries use Fat to create volume. Choux dough uses the water content within the eggs to generate steam and ‘Puff’.
1 cup water
1 stick REAL Butter
1 c. Flour
Preheat the oven to 400F
In a medium saucepan combine water and butter over medium heat and bring it to a rolling boil.
Add 1 cup of flour, stirring constantly until the mixture cooks and forms a ball, (about 1 minute!). Immediately remove from the heat and transfer to a mixing bowl. (Some residue will be left on the bottom of the pan, do not scrape this into your mixing bowl).
Add the eggs, all at once and use a hand mixer or stand mixer to mix them in completely creating a creamy panade. It should NOT be choppy looking. Immediately spoon the hot dough into the piping bag and pipe it onto a Silpat or baking sheet that has been covered with parchment paper.
DO NOT GREASE OR BUTTER THE COOKIE SHEET. This can and most likely WILL ruin your “puff”.
Pipe the dough in short 4″ strips, for a quick piping bag snip off one corner of a heavy plastic baggie.
Bake for 35-38 minutes or until the eclairs have puffed and are golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool in a draft-free spot. Do not touch them until they’ve cooled completely or they may collapse.
Do not attempt to remove them from the pan until they are completely cool.
Once they have cooled, fill a piping bag with pudding flavor of your choice and then poke it gently into 1 end of the eclair. Slowly squeeze the bag to pipe the filling into the eclair, filling the entire length of it.
Alternatively, if you don’t want holes on the ends you can pipe from the top, spacing about an inch apart and hide the piping holes with chocolate.
Top with hot fudge or chocolate frosting, serve immediately.