Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Simple and delicious Home made Cream Puffs with Blueberry Whipped cream

Simple and delicious Home made Cream Puffs with Blueberry Whipped cream

I can remember, as a kid, my mom making cream puffs for us.  They were so light and fluffy, filled with delicious whipped cream.  They were a real treat.  Sometime Mom would make them into swan shapes.  They were beautiful and delicious.  I never dreamed I'd try to make them.  I thought they would be too difficult for me to try.  

One day, last year, Mom and I were talking about birthdays.  She told me that as a little girl living in Germany, her Mom and Uromi would make her cream puffs for her birthday.  They would place them in a silver platter, filled with whipped cream and she could eat all she wanted, all day long.  They would also present her with a bouquet of Daffodils.  She said she loved feeling so special.  That's where the idea was started.  I thought I'd make sure Mom got daffodils and cream puffs for her March birthday.  

About a month before her birthday, hoping she had forgotten our conversation about her birthday as a child, I asked Mom to give me the recipe for the cream puffs. Without questioning me, she e-mailed it.  I'm always nervous when I try a new recipe, I guess everyone is.  I didn't want to ruin the ingredients, and I really wanted to make these for my Mom.  The time dwindled down to a few days before her birthday.  Since she doesn't live near me, I would have to UPS the package to her. It was time to "sink or swim".  So, I got my ingredients and went to work.  

I used a tip on the pastry bag, that was too small.  You can see the dough on the left was piped using the small tip.  I switched to a larger tip, and you can see example of those.  The ones on the far right are the ones that looked the best.  
As you press the paste, through the pastry bag tip, it will automatically spiral around, just go with it.  You can also see the water. That is the water, you'll see in the recipe, I sprinkled on top.  I just dipped my fingers in water (wash them first, ha ha ha), then let them drip on top of the pastry.  

Here are the tiny ones filled with blueberry whipped cream. They are delicious.  So light, fuffy and full of flavor.  My son asked me if I was going to mail those delicious muffins to Romi (that's what he calls her).  Yes I am.  Well, yes I did.  I couldn't post this recipe until after Moms birthday.  I didn't want to ruin the surprise.  She said she felt like a little girl again!  Success!!
Below is the recipe Mom sent me.  I just copied and pasted it here.  She used a term, Choux Paste.  Since I have never seen it before, I did a search.  It seems it is a light pastry dough that is used for many types of pastry, including eclairs.  Yum!!

Cream Puff Recipe:

Choux    Paste      
(about 2 ½ cups)

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup water
1 stick unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
½ tsp. salt
4 large eggs, at room temperature (VERY important!)
1 large pastry bag

One ½ inch plain decorator tip (I don’t know if a zip-lock bag with the edge cut off would work, it could, but you would have to re-inforce it with maybe masking tape.  I think it would be worthwhile to invest in the decorator tip and a package of disposable decorator bags)
Combine in a large, heavy saucepan:

1 cup water, the cut-up stick of unsalted butter and ½ tsp. salt.

Bring the mixture to a full boil over medium heat.

Add the flour all at once and stir vigorously with a wooden spoon.  The mixture will look rough at first but it will become smooth, at which point you should stir faster.   

When you see the mixture starting to coat the bottom of your saucepan, be watchful. 

Take your pan off the stove and let cool for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

Then, add one egg at a time, beating vigorously with a wooden spoon until totally incorporated and smooth; by the fourth egg will be shiny and if scooped up on the end of the spoon will stand erect.  

Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 400 deg. F.

Scoop the paste into a pastry bag fitted with a ½-inch plain tip and onto an ungreased cookie sheet pipe 1-inch to 1-1/2 inch little mounds about one inch apart (they spread and rise up).  

Before baking, ever so lightly sprinkle a few drops of water over the shapes for a light, airy texture.

Bake for 10 minutes.  Reduce the heat to 350 deg. And bake until golden brown and very firm to the touch, about 25 minutes longer.  

Remove to a rack and let cool completely.

Note: I used salted butter and left out the 1/2 teaspoon of salt

Slice in half (they will be hollow) and fill with your choice of:
1.  Sweetened whipped cream
2.  Whipped cream w/strawberries other berries of soft fruit mixed in
3. Puddings lightened with whipped cream
4. Ice cream

How to make Blueberry Whipped Cream:


1 small carton of heavy whipping cream
1 cup frozen blueberry's

Put the blueberry's in a food processor and finely chop

Pour the carton of heavy whipping cream into a mixer bowl and turn on the mixer.  Keep mixing until the cream starts to come together.  It looks like clouds.  I add sugar to taste, it seems the more sugar you add, the stiffer the whipping cream gets.  Too much will make it too sweet though. Once it is at a nice stiff consistency, I added the frozen blueberry's and whipped some more.  Once thoroughly combined, I put the whipped cream into a pastry bag with a round tip and filled up the cream puffs.  

I also use the flavored whipped cream for my coffee as well.  I learned this from my Mom.  Instead of using creamer in our coffee, we just used the heavy whipping cream (unwhipped).  If it was whipped, then we dropped huge dollops into our coffee.  It's so good! 

You can use anything to flavor the whipped cream, chopped strawberry's, caramel, chocolate syrup and so on.  Be daring!