Raspberry, White Chocolate & Pistachio Profiteroles

Last weekend I decided to make profiteroles for the very first time. I have never attempted choux pastry before, so I was excited to give it a go! I found a really lovely looking recipe for raspberry, white chocolate and pistachio profiteroles on the BBC Good Food website, so decided to use this. There were many comments about the recipe saying it included too many eggs, that the mixture was too runny and that the profiteroles turned out to be more like pancakes than profiteroles. In my naivety, I decided to just give it a go, thinking mine would be ok… well, I was wrong! Once I added the three large eggs specified in the recipe, the mixture was destroyed; it became a runny liquid which was impossible to pipe:

Runny Profiteroles
This is the result of  making choux pastry using the recipe above!

As you can imagine, this was really frustrating and disappointing, having spent all morning working up to this point. I followed the recipe to a T, so I can only concur with everyone else that this is not a great choux pastry recipe and I will not be using it again. On the plus side, I feel that this has taught me an important lesson – that you cannot rely on a recipe to be perfect, even when on a website like BBC Good Food! I should add, however, that the rest of the recipe for the filling and topping was lovely, which I used once I had found a different choux pastry recipe. So not one to be thwarted, I searched for a better choux pastry recipe and decided to use this profiteroles recipe on the BBC Good Food website.

Making the Choux Pastry

Step 1: Gather the ingredients

First, I gathered together all the ingredients from Fiona Beckett’s ‘Profiteroles’ recipe to make the choux pastry. Here’s what I used:

  • 50 g unsalted butter (cubed)
  • 2 tsp caster sugar
  • 75 g plain flour, sifted with a pinch of table salt
  • 150 ml water
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten

I really should try and find some matching bowls!:

Pastry Ingredients
Profiterole Ingredients

Step 2: Sift the flour

Next, I sifted the plain flour with the pinch of salt on to a piece of baking paper:

Sifted Plain Flour
Sifted Plain Flour

Step 3: Turn on the oven

I turned on the fan oven to 200 degrees Celsius.

Step 4: Make the choux pastry dough

First, I mixed the butter and caster sugar with water in a saucepan until the butter melted:

Butter_Caster Sugar_Water
Mixing the butter and caster sugar in water

I brought the mixture to a boil and then quickly removed the saucepan from the heat and tipped in the sifted flour. I beat the mixture until it came away from the sides of the pan to form a dough. I left this to cool for five minutes:

Pastry_Flour Added
Adding the flour to make the pastry dough

The next part is where things went horribly wrong the first time. This time, I gradually added just under two large eggs to the dough, to form a thick, glossy mixture. I was really happy with the consistency; it dropped off the wooden spoon nicely and I could really see this mixture working! You can imagine my relief…

Pastry_Egg Added
Adding the eggs to the pastry dough

Step 5: Pipe dough onto baking sheet

At this point, I deviated from the recipe I was following. I did not rinse the baking tray with cold water to dampen it. Apparently this helps the pastry to rise, but I have read about people having problems with pastry sticking to the tray when doing this, so I decided to line my tray with non-stick baking paper instead. Also, the recipe advises using two teaspoons to spoon blobs of the mixture onto the tray, but as I’d seen some piping tutorials, I fancied giving that a go. I do not have piping bags or nozzles, so I improvised by cutting a corner off a plastic sandwich bag, reinforcing it with tape, and cutting a semi-circle. I wasn’t convinced this was going to work very well…

Pastry Piping Bag
My homemade piping bag!

Here is my attempt at piping the dough using my makeshift pastry bag. I had prepped by watching various online piping tutorials, and was hopeful I could replicate this technique. However, what happened was the dough splurged out rather haphazardly, whilst I tried in vain to avoid the irritating piece of tape that kept getting in the way of the flow of dough… In any case, overall I was fairly pleased with how they came out. A bit messy, but my tools were lacking. My mixture made 12 balls of dough, but I only had room for nine on my baking sheet; so I did the last three after the first batch, as I wasn’t sure if two baking sheets in the oven at the same time would have an adverse effect:

Piped Choux Pastry
Piped choux pastry blobs!

Step 6: Bake profiteroles in the oven

I baked the profiteroles for 18 minutes, took them out and poked holes in the bottom of them to let out the steam, and left them to cool on a cooling tray. I have to say, I was very pleased with how the turned out – for one thing, they had risen! I think they are probably a bit on the large side, but it was very hard to control my haphazard piping bag πŸ™‚ :

Baked Choux Pastries
My first-ever batch of profiteroles!

And so, after a whole day’s work making a dodgy choux pastry dough in the morning, followed by a successful batch in the afternoon, I was knackered. I decided to store my profiteroles away in a tin overnight, and face the filling and topping the next day:

Choux Pastries in Tin
Profiteroles stored away in a cake tin

Making the Filling and Topping

Step 1: Gather the ingredients

After having had a good rest, I woke up on Sunday ready to tackle the filling and topping for the profiteroles. For this (and having forgiven her for the choux pastry recipe πŸ™‚ ), I returned to Mary Cadogan’s ‘Raspberry, White Chocolate & Pistachio Profiteroles’ recipe. Here’s what I used:

  • 200 g fresh raspberries
  • 3 tbsp icing sugar (sieved)
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 200 ml double cream
  • 150 g white chocolate
  • 50 g shelled pistachios, fairly finely chopped

I do love preparing all my ingredients in bowls to start with:

Profiterole Filling_Topping Ingredients
Profiterole Filling and Topping Ingredients
Chopped Pistachio
Finely Chopped Pistachios

Step 2: Reheat profiteroles

As I prepared my profiteroles the day before, I reheated them at 160 degrees Celsius fan oven so that they regained a bit of crispness. I decided to reheat only six of the 12, so that my husband and I could have the other six the next day! I then left them to cool down on a cooling tray.

Reheated Profiteroles
Reheated Profiteroles

Step 3: Make the filling

As I was only making the filling for half of the batch, I halved the recipe quantities and put 100 g raspberries, 1.5 tbsp icing sugar and 1 tbsp lemon juice into my NutriBullet and blitzed until smooth; then I pressed the mixture through a sieve into a bowl. Next, I whipped the cream until stiff and folded in 2 tbsp of the raspberry sauce:

Make Raspberry Filling
Blending the raspberries, icing sugar and lemon juice
Sieve Raspberry Mixture
Sieving the raspberry mixture
Sieved Raspberry Mixture
Sieved raspberry sauce
Whipped Cream
Whipped double cream
Rasberry Sauce and Cream
Raspberry sauce folded into the cream

Step 4: Make piping bag

I was a bit nervous about making another piping bag, given my experience the previous day. But for this piping bag, I decided to tape a nozzle to a party bag, which was much more satisfactory! I used a nozzle with a circular opening that was slightly smaller than the holes I had created in the bottom of my profiteroles:

Piping Bag
Piping bag attempt number two

Step 5: Pipe filling into profiteroles

First I (messily) spooned the filling into the piping bag (there must be a better way of doing this without it going all over your hands – I think the bag opening is too small):

Filling in Piping Bag
Filling in piping bag

Making sure that the profiteroles had totally cooled down, I placed the nozzle of the piping bag into the hole at the base of each one and squeezed in the mixture. To my surprise, this worked quite well! It was hard to know how much you had squeezed into each profiterole, but you could go by the weight of each one to a certain degree:

Filled Profiteroles
Filled profiteroles

Step 6: Make the topping

I put 75 g white chocolate into a bowl and melted it over a pan of simmering water:

White Chocolate
Melting white chocolate over a pan

Then I left the chocolate to cool down slightly in order to thicken up a bit:

Melted Chocolate
Melted Chocolate

Step 7: Spoon topping over profiteroles

Finally, I spooned the melted chocolate over the profiteroles, sprinkled them with pistachios and left them to set. To serve, I drizzled some of the remaining raspberry sauce over a plate, and positioned the profiteroles on top:

Profiteroles
Raspberry, white chocolate and pistachio profiteroles
Raspberry Profiteroles
Yummy profiteroles!
Profiterole_Closeup
Close-up shot of profiterole
Centre of Profiterole
Centre of Profiterole – Raspberry and Cream Filling

Verdict

Given this was my first time making profiteroles, I was pretty pleased with the results. I don’t know whether they look how they should, or whether they are too big, but they were very tasty! I’ve learnt a lot about making choux pastry, in particular that it’s really important to get the dough consistency right. There are several things I need to work on, for example I need to learn how to create a better piping bag, how to drizzle chocolate in a controlled fashion and how to drizzle sauce decoratively on plates. These profiteroles went down well with my husband so, overall, I would say that they were a success!

I would love to hear your thoughts! For example, do you think the profiteroles are too big? What piping bags do you use for dough and/or fillings, do you make your own and do you use different types for different jobs? How do you drizzle chocolate over profiteroles in a controlled manner, and do you have any tips for drizzling sauce on plates in pretty patterns? Is it okay to have two trays of profiteroles baking in the oven at the same time? Do you return your profiteroles to the oven for five minutes once you’ve poked holes in the bottoms (my recipe didn’t specify this)? And finally, do people cut their profiteroles in half in order to fill them, or do they pipe the filling through a hole in the bottom like I did?

Published by

Helena Davies

Linguist and Baker based in Cardiff, Wales.

2 thoughts on “Raspberry, White Chocolate & Pistachio Profiteroles”

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