FOOD

Strawberry Cream Puffs

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(Original story published on Wednesday April 16th on FoodNetwork.ca.)

We can all agree that no holiday feast is complete without a great dessert. After indulging in a hearty meal, we’re often in need of a treat that satisfies our sweet tooth, but doesn’t put us over the edge. Well, we have an easy recipe for an Easter dessert your guests are bound to love. Cue the strawberry cream puffs.

They’re light enough that you always have room for one, so these mini bites of heaven are the perfect way to end a great meal (and a day of binge-eating chocolate eggs).

What could be better on a sunny spring evening than an airy pastry with homemade whipped cream and tangy strawberry jam? And that’s not even the best part: chances are you already have most of the ingredients in your pantry, so they’re totally inexpensive to make.

What You Need (for pastry):
¼ cup water
¼ cup 3.25% homogenized milk
¼ cup unsalted butter
½ teaspoon coarse salt
½ cup all purpose flour
2 large eggs
Icing Sugar
Strawberry Jam

What You Need (for vanilla cream):
1 ½ cups 35% whipping cream
2 tablespoons sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:
Step One
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. On medium-high heat, bring water, milk, butter, and salt to a boil.

 

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Step Two
Remove from heat, slowly stir in flour and return to heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon for about 3 minutes.

 

Step Three
Transfer to a mixing bowl, and let cool for about 5 minutes. Mix with a wooden spoon, adding 1 egg at a time, mixing well after each addition.

 

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Step Four
Using two spoons, make 12 1½ inch round shapes onto baking sheet. Bake puffs until they rise and are golden, about 15-20 minutes.

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Step Five
While the pastry is in the oven, make the vanilla cream. Pour whipping cream in a mixing bowl and beat on medium-high speed until it starts to thicken. Pour in sugar, and beat until peaks form. Add vanilla extract and mix by hand until cream is smooth.

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Step Six
When finished baking, transfer pastry to flat plate to cool. Using a serrated knife, split eclairs in half. Spread strawberry jam on top half, vanilla cream on bottom half, and sandwich together.

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Step Seven
Dust with icing sugar and serve.

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