Cream puffs are delightful, airy pastries filled with luscious cream, making them a beloved treat for dessert lovers. While they may seem intricate, this super simple cream puff recipe demystifies the process, ensuring a delicious outcome every time. Follow these easy steps to create a batch of delectable cream puffs that will impress your family and guests.
Super Simple Cream Puffs Recipe: A Step-by-Step Guide
Ingredients You’ll Need:
For the Choux Pastry:
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 large eggs
For the Filling:
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Step 1: Preheat the Oven and Prepare Baking Sheets
Preheat your oven to 425°F (220°C) and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. This ensures that your cream puffs bake evenly without sticking.
Step 2: Prepare the Choux Pastry Dough
- In a medium saucepan, combine the water, butter, and salt. Heat over medium heat until the mixture comes to a rolling boil and the butter is fully melted.
- Reduce the heat to low and quickly add the flour all at once. Stir vigorously with a wooden spoon until the mixture forms a smooth, cohesive dough that pulls away from the sides of the pan. This should take about 2 minutes.
- Remove the saucepan from heat and let the dough cool for a few minutes.
Step 3: Incorporate the Eggs
- Add the eggs, one at a time, to the dough. Make sure each egg is fully incorporated before adding the next. The dough will initially separate but will gradually come together into a glossy, smooth mixture.
- Continue to mix until you have a thick, sticky dough that falls slowly from the spoon.
Step 4: Pipe and Shape the Cream Puffs
- Transfer the dough to a piping bag fitted with a large round tip. If you don’t have a piping bag, a zip-top bag with the corner snipped off will work.
- Pipe mounds of dough onto the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches of space between each one. Each mound should be about 1.5 inches in diameter.
Step 5: Bake the Cream Puffs
Place the baking sheets in the preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 375°F (190°C) and continue baking for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the cream puffs are golden brown and puffed.
Step 6: Cool and Prepare the Filling
- Remove the cream puffs from the oven and let them cool completely on wire racks.
- While the cream puffs are cooling, prepare the filling. In a mixing bowl, whip the heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until stiff peaks form.
Step 7: Fill the Cream Puffs
- Once the cream puffs are completely cooled, use a serrated knife to gently slice the tops off.
- Spoon or pipe the whipped cream filling into the bottom halves of the cream puffs. Replace the tops.
Step 8: Dust with Powdered Sugar (Optional)
For an extra touch of sweetness and presentation, you can dust the cream puffs with a light layer of powdered sugar.
Congratulations! You’ve successfully created a batch of super simple cream puffs that are sure to delight your taste buds. Whether you’re enjoying them on your own or sharing with loved ones, these light, airy pastries are bound to be a hit. Remember, practice makes perfect, so don’t be afraid to experiment and refine your technique for even more spectacular cream puffs in the future. Enjoy!