homemade eclairs

i always see eclairs at french bakeries and think to myself how beautiful they are, how delicious they may taste, how they would melt in my mouth… then i look at the price (usually about $3 an eclair) and i quickly snap out of it. what can i say? i’m on a budget but i do love a little indulgence so i was on the hunt to create a recipe to make these beauties at home.
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for my first batch, these didn’t come out bad. in fact, they were damn delicious. i may need some more time in the decorating department because some i’ve come across are gorgeous but overall, i was very happy with my first batch of eclairs. the pastry delicately broke apart upon first bite, the pastry cream melted in my mouth and the chocolate gave the perfect amount of sweetness. plus, the fresh fruit made me feel like i was eating healthier – hey, it’s the thought that counts, right? hope you give these a shot and i’d love to see your creation by tagging #sweetjosephinesSA on instagram.

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homemade eclairs

Ingredients

pastry cream

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 9 egg yolks
  • 6 tbsp. cornstarch
  • 4 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 3 cups milk

pastry

  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 8 tbsp. unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 eggs, room temperature

icing

  • 4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate
  • 4 oz. butter, melted

Instructions

for pastry cream

  1. whisk sugar, yolks, and cornstarch in a medium saucepan until smooth. add butter, vanilla, and milk; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium; cook, stirring, until custard is thick, 3 to 5 minutes. pour through a mesh strainer into a bowl; cover surface with plastic wrap. chill completely.

for the eclairs

  1. make the pastry: heat the oven to 425°. bring milk, butter, salt, and 1⁄2 cup water to a boil in a large saucepan over high heat. add flour; stir until a dough forms. reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring, the dough constantly with a wooden spoon, until slightly dried, about 2 minutes. transfer the dough to a bowl and, using a hand mixer, beat in eggs, one at a time, until smooth.

  2. using a piping bag, pipe 4-inch lines of dough onto parchment paper-lined baking sheets. place the tray in the oven and reduce the temperature to 375°. bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes, and cool.

  3. to assemble the eclairs: make a wide incision in the side of each pastry. place pastry cream into a piping bag and fill each pastry with cream. spread icing or dip eclair into bowl of icing over the top of each. let sit for about 5-10 minutes, until the icing hardens, before serving.

for the icing

  1. add chocolate and melted butter into a bowl. place bowl over boiling water or a double broiler until fully melted and smooth.

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