Éclairs with almond cream

4
4
4
SmartPoints® value per serving
Total Time
1 hr 10 min
Prep
0 min
Cook
1 hr 10 min
Serves
12
Difficulty
Moderate
Éclairs are much easier to make than you think. It starts with Pâte à Choux, or puff pastry dough, which uses moisture and steam instead of a leavening agent to create a light, airy pastry. You can fill these with pastry cream, as described, or use prepared sugar-free pudding or light whipped cream instead. You can change the flavoring of the pastry cream here by changing the extract used—vanilla, lemon, hazelnut, and bourbon extracts are all wonderful options. But the list goes on, so use whatever flavor suits your tastes. These can also be sprinkled with cocoa powder or ground cinnamon in place of the confectioners' sugar.

Ingredients

Water

1 cup(s)

Egg(s)

1 item(s), large, large

Regular butter

¼ cup(s)

Sugar

1 tsp

Sea salt

tsp

All-purpose flour

1 cup(s)

Egg white(s)

2 item(s)

Low-fat milk

1½ cup(s)

Almond extract

1 tsp

Powdered sugar (confectioner's)

1 tsp

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Lightly spray a large baking sheet with nonstick spray. Line the sheet with parchment paper. Cream-puff dough: Bring the water, butter, sugar, and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan. Stir in the flour all at once; cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until dough begins to pull away from sides of pan, 1–2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the egg and egg whites, one at a time, beating vigorously after each, until dough is shiny and smooth. The dough will separate as you add the eggs; keep beating as it smooths out, stiffens, and holds its shape. Spoon dough into a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain tip. Pipe dough onto baking sheet into 12 (31/2-inch) strips. Bake until golden, about 30 minutes. Let rest on baking sheet until cool enough to handle, 2–3 minutes, then split in half lengthwise with a sharp knife to allow the steam to escape. Remove and discard some of the soft dough from the centers. Cool éclairs completely on a rack. Almond cream: Combine granulated sugar, flour, and salt in a medium saucepan. Whisk in milk and egg. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until mixture coats the back of a spoon, about 8 minutes (do not boil). Remove from heat; stir in almond extract. Transfer to a small bowl. Place the bowl into a larger bowl filled with ice cubes and water. Refrigerate, covered, until the mixture mounds when dropped from a spoon, about 30 minutes. Spoon about 2 tablespoons of pastry cream into each éclair. Dust with confectioners’ sugar and serve at once.