Chocolate Eclairs

Pastry

  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup butter, cubed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 eggs

Filling

  • 2 1/2 cups cold milk
  • 1 package (5.1 ounces) instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Frosting

  • 2 squares (1 ounce each) semisweet chocolate, or 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/4 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons hot water

In a large saucepan, bring water, butter and salt to a boil. Add flour all at once and stir until a smooth ball forms. Remove from the heat; let stand for 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Continue beating until mixture is smooth and shiny.


Using a tablespoon or a pastry tube with a No. 10 or larger tip, form dough into 4-in. x 1 1/2 in. strips on a greased baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until puffed and golden. Remove to a wire rack. Immediately split eclairs open; remove tops and set aside. Discard soft dough from inside. Cool eclairs.


In a large bowl, whisk milk and pudding mix for 2 minutes. In another bowl, whip cream until soft peaks form. Beat in sugar and vanilla; fold into pudding. Split eclair; remove soft dough from inside. Fill eclairs (chill any remaining filling for another use).


For frosting, in a microwave, melt chocolate and butter; stir until smooth. Stir in sugar and enough hot water to achieve a smooth consistency. Cool slightly. Frost eclairs. Store in refrigerator.


Yields: 9 servings.


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