The Covered Dish - Savory & Sweet Cream Puffs
I’m not sure I’ve ever run this easy recipe for cream puffs. I started making cream puffs in my early 20’s. As I recall the first time I made them was the 4th of July, around 1982 – 1984. I even remember where I was, I was working on the Golden Eagle Riverboat, in Canton, Missouri. We were having an ‘after the show’ 4th of July party. I took a tray of savory puffs and a tray of sweet cream filled puffs.
I recall I waited until just before serving time to fill the puffs. Usually I use a fork and just lightly tug them open. Don’t get out the knife, the first method works well. I want to say I filled one with egg salad and the other with a ‘tight’ vanilla pudding.
They look ‘cute’ on a tray, it appears that you’ve gone way out of your way to make something extra special, which you have, and it’s not that difficult!!!
These days I play around a great deal more with the fillings. My biggest tip on the fillings is to keep them ‘tight’ as I stated above. If the filling is too ‘loosey goosey’ the guest bites in and it drips everywhere. You definitely don’t want that to happen.
Ladies, you will enjoy serving these at showers and ladies teas. Don’t think for a minute the men won’t enjoy them too, they will.
Last week I was pretty adamant about sharing a new salad with you today or a cake. Allow me to explain why I’m not sharing one of these recipes this week. I feel like I have to come clean on this. The rice salad dish that I made needed to go back to the drawing board. After I made my own recipe, I realized something was missing, and I couldn’t quickly put my finger on it. That means more digging into dialogues and conversations over recipes on line. By golly, as my husband, Ervin, would say, I found a ‘discussion’, on line that solved the problem. The answer was from an 80+ contributor. When it’s just Ervin & I testing recipes, (I was off work this past week on holiday.) it’s hard to eat all this salad and then turn right back around and make it all again. So, I’m giving myself a breathier and next week the new recipe should be ready to roll. (I’m actually glad to make it again, because I love the salad and the history associated with it.)
Sometimes when you write recipes it’s hard to go back to something when it doesn’t come out perfect, on the first run. You need to give the palate a bit of a rest before you go at it once again. Also; these days, with the price of food, you like to get it right the first time!
This past week was so wonderful, our nephew, Brayden, was here for about 8 days. He is a great young man, we ran around doing things and even stayed home a day, so Aunt Debbie could rest! We met his dad on Sunday morning back at our half-way point in Osceola, Missouri. I’m seriously going to miss him this coming week. Tomorrow Ervin has to mail his tennis shoes home, I thought we did a good job getting him gathered, but obviously not!
This week I hope to sew and do a few things on the home front this week. Rejoice everyone the temperatures will be more reasonable for about a week, I for one, am ecstatic on that point. Simply yours, The Covered Dish.
Savory & Sweet Cream Puffs
(Pronounced “shoo pastry”)
Cream puff pastry is the same dough used for eclairs and churros
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup whole milk
8 tablespoons salted butter
1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup flour
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 additional large egg
1 additional tablespoon of water or milk
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Prepare jelly roll pan with parchment or silpat covering. Place 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup whole milk, butter, sugar and salt in small saucepan. Over medium heat cook ingredients to a boil. Remove from heat and with a wooden spoon stir in the 1 cup of flour, all at once. Return to medium heat and cook until a thin film forms on the bottom of the pan. This will release the moisture from the eggs and partially cook the flour.
Move cooked mixture to a mixing bowl and beat for 1 minute on medium. This is to assist in cooling down the dough, prior to the eggs. One at a time add the 4 eggs. Beat until the dough is like a thick ribbon.
Before starting the dough decide how you are going to place the dough on the baking sheet. Some choose to use a 5/8 “piping tip to form the puffs. My favorite is to simply use a 3 tablespoon scoop or a 1/4 cup measuring cup. This method will also aid in preventing peaks on the puffs. If you choose to put an egg wash on the puffs whisk the egg and water/milk together, brushing lightly across the top of each puff.
Place puffs ‘centered’ in the 425 degree oven. Bake for 10 minutes. DO NOT
open the door. After the ten minutes reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees and bake an additional 20-22 minutes longer. The best way to tell if a puff is done is by the deep golden color tone. Open oven and prick each puff with a toothpick to allow the steam to escape and to keep the puff from flattening.
The puffs can be filled with a piping tool or by cutting the puffs in half. There have been times when I’ve even used a fork to lift them open. The inside should be very hollow. If it does not have the hollow appearance it is ok to pinch some of the dough out.
Puffs may be filled with savory or sweet fillings. Extracts, spices and zests can be added to the puff dough to complement the fillings. This recipe should yield approximately 20 puffs.
What makes the cream puffs ‘puff’? The moisture in the eggs turns to steam puffing the batter.
Frequently puffs have powdered sugar sprinkled over them before serving.
Fruits can also be added inside cream puffs.
2 boxes instant cheesecake pudding
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup half and half
Additional milk or half and half, find out after cream cheese is added.
8 ounces softened whipped cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla
In a mixing bowl combine 2 vanilla puddings, cream and half and half. With a whisk blend until smooth. Set aside to firm. With a mixer whip the cream cheese until smooth, adding the vanilla. After the pudding is set combine the two mixtures. Spoon or pipe into puffs.
Some powdered sugar could be added if not sweet enough
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