Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Choux!

We've been making a lot of things with choux pastry recently! And again, I don't remember in what order we did the projects last week, and I'm sure there must be other things we made that I didn't get pictures of, but my memory is just shot. I'm really tired, so please excuse any typing errors!

Eclairs
Not too much to say about eclairs... You make choux pastry, you use a pastry bag to form your eclairs/whatever, bake, then fill (custard) and cover (chocolate fondant). The challenge is to make them the right size, and all the same. As you can see, I wasn't very consistent, and mine were borderline too thin. But they passed.


Charlotte
This was a fun dessert to make, but I was running the store that day, so I kept having to leave it and then come back and try to remember where I was and what to do next. But we started out by make biscuits à cuillère (I'm pretty sure this is what we call Ladyfingers), and using the same batter to make round disks which make the base and middle layer of the Charlotte. The we covered them all generously with powdered sugar before baking, to make them crispy. Putting it together was pretty straight forward, but a bit tricky. The ladyfingers are all hooked together, so you just pick up the whole row and form around the inside of a circle mold. Then drop one circle inside, chocolate mousse, another cookie circle, more mousse, then cover with chocolate curls and powdered sugar, and finish with a ribbon. Very pretty presentation. I didn't get to taste this one and I didn't take it home, but I think it's something I would try making at home.



St-Honoré
This was all made with choux pastry. There's a very thin layer of flaky pastry on the bottom, covered with choux pastry and baked. Then it's filled with custard and covered with chantilly cream, with a little around the sides to stick the almonds to. Then 8 little cream puffs (filled with custard), plus one in the middle, more cream around everything, and finished off with a cherry and some chocolate curls.



Halloween
Friday was a really relaxed, fun day. We made Halloween cakes. They all had to be the same basic cake (chocolate genoise with orange butter cream, and chocolate butter cream chains around top and bottom), but after that, the design was completely up to us (but all the decorations had to be edible)! We knew ahead, so I did a little research the night before for a design I liked, which I found on this very cool and informative blog http://www.mycakeschool.com/blog/park-your-brooms-a-witchy-blog-tutorial/ I really like how it turned out, except for the writing on top. I didn't want to write anything, and it would have looked better without, but that was another stipulation - there had to be some writing, in some form, somewhere! I suppose I could have written Boo! between some of the legs or something else, but I didn't. So, the shoes I made out of almond paste, and everything else is piped butter cream. Our Community Centre (Brookbury) was having a potluck supper Saturday night, so I took the cake to be raffled off. :)




Choux
Or, cream puffs. :) I made the actual pastries last week, but didn't finish them until yesterday. They're filled with chantilly cream and covered with chocolate fondant.


Tartlets
Because we've started a new module, which is small cakes and petit fours, we've making a lot of the same things we've already done, but in miniature. So these are mini fresh fruit tarts. I think they look a lot nicer than the big tarts, and for that reason they're more appetizing, so I actually tried one, and they're quite tasty! :)


Cygnes
And today we made choux pastry swans - SO CUTE! And easy. You just make your choux pastry in the shape of a tear/water droplet, and then make a neck separately. After baking, you cut the top off of the tear, fill the tear with custard and cover with chantilly. Then you cut the top in half and sprinkle with powdered sugar and place as wings, then poke in the necks. Voila! :)



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