A fruity take on éclairs: one of my favourite pastry treats. Fresh, frozen or even tinned soft fruit work well here to give a sticky, tangy icing. In this post, I also give a recipe for an easy fruit mousse filling and tips for achieving a neat sticky glaze.
This is a re-working of my earlier blackcurrant and raspberry éclairs recipe, this time with a slightly different filling and a more deliberate chocolate topping!
Any soft fruit works well here
The fruit is so interchangeable that almost any fruit will do: even tinned fruit, drained and pureéd works brilliantly here. Favourites of mine include:
But I often like to use either lemon, lime or grapefruit juice in the icing for the top.
A moussey filling
Cream alone is, of course, wonderful as a filling for choux pastry and this is the way I normally go. However, I am quite partial to a more mousse-like filling from time to time, but a mixture of cream, yoghurt and melted white chocolate (equal amounts of each) gives a lovely filling.
The recipe for the pastry and the topping is at the link given above, but the recipe for the moussey filling is here:
For this filling:
- 150ml melted white chocolate
- 150ml fruit pureé, slightly warmed*
- 400ml lightly whipped double cream (to soft peaks)
*using a warm pureé helps it to mix with the chocolate without the chocolate seizing up. I normally just pass the soft fruit through a seive to extract the juice, but you can buy good fruit coulis in the shops.
You simply mix the chocolate and fruit pureé together and let it cool to about room temperature, when it will become slighty thicker. Add the cream and fold gently to incorporate.
You can then either pipe it into the choux pastry or spoon it.
A crisp chocolate top
The chocolate on top is simply good quaility melted white chocolate, onto which I have sprinkled dried raspberry pieces before leaving to set and then cut into pieces.
Top tips for topping!
For me, the easiest way to get a neat topping for choux pastry is as follows:
- slice the cooled pastry in half horizontally.
- put a sheet of greaseproof paper underneath a wire rack (to catch drips!)
- spoon or pipe the filling onto the bases.
- pour the icing into a small container that gives at least 1cm deep of icing: I tend to use a small plastic food container.
- take a top half of pastry and dip it straight into the icing, pressing lightly so the icing goes up to where the cut was made.
- lift it out, give a gentle shake over the container to allow the excess icing to drop back into container.
- place the iced tops, icing side upwards, onto the wire rack to allow the icing to set.
- once set, use a knife or palette knife to gently slide the tops onto the filling.