{Recipe: Profiteroles w/ coconut milk vanilla bean pastry cream}

TGIF everyone!

I’m gonna start off the weekend with a recipe that has been on my to-make list for awhile. Profiteroles.

A French dessert of choux pastry puffs – thin crispy golden hollow shells that can be filled with whipping cream, pastry cream or even ice cream..

I did a quick search on the net for a recipe to try…there were complicated ones..and there were easy ones…

I went with an easy one..

It seemed straightforward enough. Melt some butter with water in a pot on the stove and heat to a rolling boil.

Into a pot goes some flour, salt and sugar.

Stir and cook the dough till it comes together into a nice ball..

Scoop the hot dough into the mixing bowl and whip in 4 eggs with your paddle attachment on med speed.

Within a couple minutes you’ll have this gorgeous thick pale yellow batter.

Oh yes..the perfect consistency.

Drop heaping teaspoons onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake at 425F for 20 minutes.

When they’re out of the oven, make sure to poke a hole in the side with a skewer to let the steam escape.

The last thing you want is for these beautiful puffy shells to deflate.

Basic Profiterole Recipe

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
  2. In a large pot, bring water and butter to a rolling boil. Stir in flour, salt and sugar until the mixture forms a ball.
  3. Transfer the dough to a large mixing bowl. Using a wooden spoon (lots of elbow grease) or stand mixer, beat in all the eggs and vanilla extract at once and mix on med speed for 2-3 minutes (until the dough becomes tacky and sticks to the side of the bowl).
  4. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto a parchment lined baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, until golden brown. Centers should be dry.
  6. Using a bamboo skewer poke a small hole in the side of each puff to allow the steam to escape so they don’t get soggy.

When the shells are cool, you can start to fill them..

In an attempt to use up some leftover egg yolks I made this deliciously creamy and decadent coconut vanilla bean pastry cream.

So aromatic and comforting..This reminded me of a rich vanilla ice cream with an exotic twist from the coconut.

I followed the recipe here, and instead of milk, I subbed in one can of full-fat coconut milk and vanilla almond milk for the rest of the liquid. Making this a great alternative for those who are lactose intolerant.

Don’t throw out the pod when you’re done scraping the seeds though. You can pop these into a jar of sugar to make vanilla scented sugar or make your own vanilla extract 🙂

Coconut vanilla bean pastry cream/pudding (adapted from Smitten Kitchen)

  • 2 2/3 cups whole milk (I subbed in one can of full fat coconut milk and used vanilla almond milk for the rest of the liquid)
  • 1/3 cup sugar (can use 1/2 cup if you like it sweeter)
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Seeds from 1/2 vanilla bean (or 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract)
  • 1 large egg

Bring 2 cups of the milk to a boil in a medium saucepan. While it is heating, combine sugar, cornstarch, salt and vanilla bean (if you’re replacing it with extract, don’t add it yet; if you’d like to toss the leftover vanilla bean pods in the pot with the simmering milk for an extra vanilla boost, go for it) in the bottom of a medium, heatproof bowl. Gradually whisk in the remaining 2/3 cup milk, a little at a time so lumps do not form, then whisk in the egg. Once milk is boiling, very gradually add it to the cornstarch mixture in the bowl, whisking the whole time.

Return the mixture back to the saucepan, stirring constantly with a silicon spatula or wooden spoon. Once it comes to a simmer, cook it for one minute longer (which will cook the cornstarch and egg fully). Stir in vanilla extract, if you’re using it and divide pudding among 6 dishes. Chill in refrigerator until fully set, about 2 hours.

[If you don’t like pudding skin, we can’t be friends just press a piece of plastic wrap against the top of the pudding before you chill it.]

Scoop the pudding mixture into a bag with a tip and pipe in the filling through the side of the puff. And just to make them extra special, I topped them with some melted Fauchon chocolate prailine ganache (the last of my beloved jar from Paris..)

Consume immediately.

Are you drooling yet?

Cause I sure am.

Good to the last bite…Go your kitchen and make this NOW. You won’t regret it 🙂

Note: Try to eat your filled profiteroles as soon as possible as the shell will absorb the moisture from the pudding. If you have leftover unfilled shells, you can pop these in to a freezer bag and defrost them when you’re ready to fill them.

4 Responses to “{Recipe: Profiteroles w/ coconut milk vanilla bean pastry cream}”
  1. YES! I want these! When I lived in France I ate eclairs nearly every day (and sometimes 2 a day). It was a naughty but delicious habit. Now I can make my own! Thanks! 😉

  2. Nik says:

    What do you think would happen if I used coconut oil instead of butter for the puffs? It works well as an ounce-for-ounce substitute in cookies, but I don’t know about the puffs. Any idea?

    • I’ve never seen any recipes substituting coconut oil in profiteroles.. If you’re in for experimenting, maybe try subbing half of the butter with coconut oil rather than all of it and see how it turns out. My recommendation would be to stick with good ol’ butter, eat a few and share the rest 😉

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