I have seen profiteroles or choux pastry made on TV several times and was intrigued at how so few and so simple ingredients could result in something so elegant. Cooking magic at it's best! I added this recipe to the "Recipes to Try" list I keep in my overloaded, overwhelmed file cabinet of a brain.
The first time I ate profiteroles was on my 40th birthday this past August. My best friend Amy treated me to dinner at Three Suns Bistro, a small restaurant in Nicholasville, Kentucky. After a glass of wine, some great food, and a lot of laughs, I ordered profiteroles with ice cream and chocolate sauce for dessert to celebrate this milestone birthday. They were delicious. Another note to self to try and make them myself.
Fast forward a few months and I am reading Freakin' Fabulous How to Dress, Speak, Behave, Eat, Drink, Entertain, Decorate, and Generally Be Better Than Everyone Else by Clinton Kelly. Clinton is the co-host of TLC's What Not to Wear, one of my favorite shows. This book has a lot of silliness, not necessarily a complaint, but also has a lot of useful, practical information including simple recipes. The recipe below is adapted from his for Cream Puffs in this book. Clinton says this recipe will rock your world and he is right. It is so easy and versatile. I love a recipe that can be used in both savory and sweet applications (I will add a teaspoon of sugar the next time I make them for a dessert as I felt that they need a hint of sweetness.) The possibilities for this recipe truly are endless, they would be great stuffed with chicken or tuna salad, slices of flank steak, fresh fruit, stewed fruit, and on and on. They were freakin' fabulous.
Freakin' Fabulous Profiteroles
adapted from Freakin' Fabulous by Clinton Kelly
1 cup water
1 stick butter
1 cup flour
In a medium saucepan, boil the water and the butter. Bring to a simmer and stir in the flour - 1/4 a cup at a time. The mixture will become a big ball. Let mixture cool to room temperature.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Transfer mixture to mixing bowl. Using the slow setting on electric mixer, add the eggs one at a time. Don't add the next egg until the previous one has been incorporated. Beat until smooth and velvety.
Lightly coat a cookie sheet with nonstick spray or use a Silpat.
Drop the batter in 8 large spoonfuls on the cookie sheet and bake for 45 minutes. Or place mixture in pastry bag fitted with large star tip and pipe 1-2 inch round puffs. If making smaller puffs, bake for 30-35 minutes, until medium-golden brown and dry on the outside.