Classic Eclair Recipe
This Classic Eclair recipe is a Pate a Choux based hollow pastry shell filled with creamy custard, then dipped into a shiny chocolate glaze. This is a simple, yet sophisticated and all around delicious Chocolate Eclair Recipe!
Here you’ll learn the tips and tricks on how to make eclairs. You’ll love this recipe for eclairs with the perfect hollow shells and the creamiest custard filling.
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I love eclairs, the taste of the pate a choux with the custard is a heavenly combination. We have a local French boulangerie that sells eclairs and we always get one when we are there.
One day, I just had to recreate them and came up with this homemade eclair recipe. These delicious pastries may take some time, but they are so worth it in the end! Trust me!
They taste even better with the pretty crystallized mint. 😉 Keep reading to find out how to make these delicious chocolate eclairs, and the crystallized mint. The mint leaf is optional though, so add it if you want, but don’t feel like you have to.
Do you have a step by step photo tutorial of the pâté a choux recipe?
Well yes, I’m glad you asked! Click here to see just how simple the process is. Once you see the step by step pictures, everything becomes so much more clear!
What is the difference between Eclair and Profiterole?
They taste the same, they’re made with the same ingredients, so why the different name? It’s all in the shape. The round shaped, custard or sometimes whipped cream filled pâté a choux pastries are called profiteroles, and the log-shaped ones are called éclairs.
Types of Fillings for Chocolate Covered Eclairs
There are two types of custards that you can fill éclairs. One with a gelatin-based cream, and one that’s just custard based one. I went with the non-gelatinized one this time. I figured most people don’t have unflavored gelatin just lying around the house, but definitely, do have some all-purpose flour.
What other fillings for Eclairs can we use?
- Try this Mousseline Cream, or this Coffee Flavored Custard, as a substitute for the Classic Custard filling.
- The Eclair below is filled with the Dulce de Leche Mousseline Cream.
What is your favorite filling for Eclairs?
This recipe has been adapted from “Chocolate Desserts” by Pierre Herme
This Classic Eclair recipe is a Pate a Choux based hollow pastry shell filled with creamy custard, then dipped into a shiny chocolate glaze. Simple, yet sophisticated and all around delicious chocolate eclair recipe!
- 6 egg yolks
- 2 cups whole milk
- 3/4 cups sugar
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean emulsion
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 oz unsalted butter
Pate Choux Pastry
How to Make the Custard
- Whisk the egg yolks & sugar and flour together in a large bowl, add a little bit of milk if mixture it too thick and difficult to whisk.
- Bring milk to a boil.
- Slowly pour the milk into the egg yolk mixture, continuously whisking. This is called ‘tampering the yolks’.
- Pour the mixture back into the pot and bring to a boil, continuously stirring and going along the bottom of the pot in zigzag motion with a rubber spatula, to prevent scorching. It WILL stick if you stop.
- Cook for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat.
- Add the vanilla extract & butter. Allow the butter to melt and stir for it to incorporate.
- Cover the custard with plastic wrap it touches the custard. To speed up the process you can transfer the custard into a jelly-roll pan, spread it thin, covering with plastic wrap will avoid skin formation. Refrigerate until ready to use.
How to make Pate a Choux
- Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Fit a pastry bag with plain 1/3 inch tip nozzle and drape the bag over a large glass.
- Preheat oven to 425F.
- Whisk the eggs together.
- In a heavy bottom saucepan combine, milk, water, butter, sugar & salt. Bring to a boil.
- Once the mixture is at a rolling boil, add the flour all at once, reduce heat to medium and start mixing the dough with a wooden spoon vigorously. Continue doing so for another 2-3 minutes to evaporate some of the moisture.
- Transfer the dough to the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and start stirring the dough on medium speed for 1-2 minutes to cool it down slightly.
- Add the eggs to the mixture in 4-5 additions, each time allowing the mixer to incorporate the eggs fully before adding more. The dough might separate at first, but it will come back together as you continue stirring and adding more eggs. The mixture should be thick but still fall off the paddle attachment in a thick ribbon. You might not add all eggs before this happens. It is ok.
- Transfer the warm dough to the piping bag and pipe out 2-3 inch logs, about 2 inches apart. Place the first baking sheet in the oven and bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 375F and continue baking until golden in color, about 25 minutes. DO NOT open the door before the éclairs are golden, they will deflate.
- Keep the other sheet with piped logs in the freezer or refrigerator until the first sheet is out of the oven.
- Allow the éclairs to cool.
How to make the Chocolate Glaze
- Combine all ingredients in a heatproof bowl, set over a pot of simmering water. Bottom of the bowl should not touch the water.
- Warm up the mixture and allow the chocolate to melt, stirring it occasionally. Do not overheat. The mixture should only be warm, not hot.
- Take off the heat and allow the chocolate to completely melt, stirring it every couple of minutes until chocolate melts.
Mint Leaf Decoration
- Wash and dry thoroughly each leaf.
- Set egg whites in a heatproof bowl, over simmering water and heat, stirring continuously until 140 degrees, or pretty hot to the touch.
- Allow the egg whites to cool.
- Dip each leaf into the egg whites, allowing most of the egg whites to drip off. The leaves should only be damp with egg white.
- Dredge each leaf in the sugar on both sides and set on a paper towel or a cooling rack for sugar to harden up.
Fill and Decorate the Classic Eclair
- Fill a pastry bag fitted with a plain 1/4 inch star/plain tip with custard.
- Fill each éclair with custard by inserting the tip into the top of the pastry in 3 places, closer to both ends and in the middle, and squeezing the custard in until it almost starts to come out. Wipe off excess. Leave for 15 minutes for the skin to form in the places where you inserted the custard.
- Carefully, dip top of each éclair into the chocolate glaze.
- Top with 1 mint leaf as a decoration.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.
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