Monday, September 22, 2008

Chocolate Chip Eclairs

The addition of chocolate chips gives these luxurious pastries extra appeal. Recipe makes 14-15 eclairs.


1/2 cup all-purpose (plain) flour
Pinch of salt
2 ounces (60 g) unsalted butter
2 large eggs, beaten
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
1/2 pint (300 ml) double (thickened) cream
5 ounces (150 g) dark cooking chocolate, coarsely chopped
Icing and Decoration:
1 ounce (30 g) unsalted butter
2 ounces (60 g) dark cooking chocolate
8 teaspoons golden syrup
8 teaspoons double (thickened) cream
Icing sugar, to dust
Fresh strawberries


1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease two baking trays with melted butter. Sift flour and salt onto a sheet of greaseproof paper.
2. Put the butter and 5 fl ounces (150 ml) water into a heavy-based saucepan and heat gently until the butter melts. Raise the heat to medium and bring to the boil. Quickly add the flour all at once, then immediately remove from the heat and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon until the mixture forms a smooth ball. Cool slightly.
3. Beat the eggs into the mixture, a little at a time, until smooth and glossy. Put mixture in a piping bag fitted with a large plain nozzle/pipe.
4. Pipe the mixture onto the prepared baking trays in thick 3 inch (7.5 cm) lengths. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until well risen; reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and bake for a further 10 minutes, until golden brown and crisp. Slit down the side of each eclair. Cool in the oven, with the door ajar, for about 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool.
5. For the filling, scald the cream in a saucepan over a low heat. Turn off the heat and add the chocolate. Leave to stand undisturbed for 5 minutes, then stir until smooth. Chill until thick.
6. For the icing, put the butter and chocolate in a small bowl over a pan of simmering water and leave to melt, stirring occasionally. Whisk in the golden syrup and cream with a balloon whisk until the icing is smooth and glossy.
7. Pipe the filling in the slit of the eclairs. Dip the tops of the eclairs in the icing and leave to set. Dust with icing sugar and serve with strawberries.

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