The classic French éclair is staging a comeback. At Bouchon Bakery, with four locations nationally, chocolate éclairs are selling out daily, and Patisserie 46 owner John Kraus offers amazing seasonal cream-filled pâte à choux, as well as mini éclairs, filled with chocolate or vanilla cream.
The same pastry batter can be used to make the light and airy confections known as cream puffs and chocolate éclairs, according to King Arthur Flour. Cream puffs, round and fat, are filled with whipped cream and dusted with a blizzard of confectioners’ sugar. Pipe the batter into longer ropes and you end up with log-shaped éclairs, ready to be filled with pastry cream and drizzled with chocolate icing.
According to this recipe courtesy of the American Egg Board, it’s important to add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition by hand or with a mixer on medium speed, until smooth. Continue beating, if necessary, until glossy and a small quantity of dough scooped on the end of a spoon stands erect.
Shape the dough into 4-inch by 1-inch fingers and bake until firm and golden brown. Once cooled, cut off a half inch from the top of each éclair and spoon in pastry cream, then replace the top. Spread chocolate glaze over the tops.
For retail bakeries and cafes looking for a convenient, labor-saving option, ifiGourmet has launched new filled and frozen eclairs, which are available in nine flavors. These buttery, French eclairs are dipped by hand, using only all-natural ingredients.
“We looked to our own supply of already amazing products and decided on our French éclair shells from Jean Ducourtieux, tantalizing flavor pastes from Dreidoppel, and the finest chocolate from CasaLuker to create frozen eclairs like no other,” marketing director Shelly Kreml says.
Filled and frozen eclairs are the latest addition to the ifiGourmet personal pastry collection and have been developed and taste-tested by the product development team.
Flavor options include vanilla, chocolate, espresso, chocolate raspberry, chocolate peanut butter, peanut butter and jelly, strawberries and cream, pistachio mascarpone, and the classic bananas foster.