#62 make a croquembouche

croquembouche02

A croquembouche is a showpiece dessert of French origin that is popular at big events such as weddings and anniversaries. It’s basically a tall tower of profiteroles. Lots of recipes and writeups about it.

I have a foolproof choux pastry recipe from the Sainsbury’s home baking book. I’ve been using this recipe for years and years and years.

  • 4oz butter
  • 300ml water
  • 5oz plain flour
  • 4 eggs

Heat the butter and water until boiling. Remove from heat and add flour all at once. I’d double sifted the flour beforehand. Beat with wooden spoon until the mixture leaves the sides of the saucepan. Add eggs a little at a time, combining well. Spoon onto a lined baking sheet and bake at 200°C for 25mins until golden. Make a slit at the side and cool. I used regular whipped cream sweetened with a little icing sugar for filling. This made 24 small profiteroles.

Carefully melt caster sugar in a heavy pan. When caramelised, dip profiteroles one by one and arrange. The caramel acts as glue to bind the puffs together. To make the sugar decoration, dip a whisk in the caramel and flick it across 2 sticks (I used planting sticks, although rulers might have worked better).

Normally croquembouches are very tall, hence their centrepiece nature. Mine was more like a mini version.