This post and these delicious delights were made in honour of my tiny baby cousin, Maggie, who was born 7 weeks early weighing just 2lbs 13oz. These are delicate, pink and yummy so the perfect post for Maggie. The timing of the post even more perfect because she is one month old today and is getting home from hospital tomorrow. We are all very excited.
I got the idea for these when my sister and I had afternoon tea at Fortnum & Mason. The eclair was the stand-out cake for us both. I had promised to make eclairs when I made profiteroles a little while ago. That’s the beauty of choux pastry – you can make sweet buns, savoury buns and eclairs all from the same batch. Simply freeze the baked pastry in an air tight container until ready to use. Then fill as you desire.
These soft light choux pastry eclairs are filled with a smooth and creamy vanilla creme patissiere and topped with pink rose water icing and some freeze dried raspberries for extra pink-ness. Very girlie and very Maggie!
ROSE WATER ECLAIRS
Again I have followed Leiths How to Cook to make the creme patissiere. This is essentially like a thick custard which fills the eclair. Here is a similar recipe for creme patissiere. Once you have made the creme filling and allowed it to cool, place the creme in a piping bag with a small nozzle. Make a small insertion with the nozzle at one end of the eclair and gently squeeze the piping bag. You need to work slowly and carefully as you don’t want the pastry to crack and the creme to seep out. You will feel the creme filling out the centre of the pastry. It is difficult to judge how much to put in when you can’t see inside so you will have to rely on how it feels. If you prefer, you can make small incisions at each end of the eclairs and just pipe a little creme in at each side to make sure the filling is right through the middle.
For the rose water icing, make a thick icing by adding a little water along with a few drops of rose water and pink food colouring to some icing sugar. It is best to add a very small amount of water at a time so you can get a sense of the consistency. The icing should be quite thick and gloopy. If it is too watery, it will run down the sides of the eclairs. Don’t worry if it does become too runny, just add a little extra icing sugar. Just a word of warning when it comes to the rose water – it can be very strong and overpowering so again just add a couple of drops to start and taste as you go.
Drizzle the icing and spread along the top of the eclairs. As you can see from mine, they are far from perfect but I like them this way. If you want to be more exact, you can use a piping bag and pipe a rectangular shape. To finish, top with a sprinkling of freeze-dried raspberries or strawberries.
These delicate and pretty floral delights are ideal now that Spring seems to have officially sprung and are a great celebratory treat for Maggie coming home.
Now for another delight…