Intense Chocolate Eclair
Eclair means ''Lightening'' (Eaten quickly). An éclair is an oblong pastry made with pâte à choux (Choux pastry) which is the same dough used for profiterole. Eclair is originally filled with pastry cream (Crème pâtissière) and Chiboust cream. Diplomate cream, or ganache montée, or crémeux, are also used in eclair making. Back in the days, eclairs were only flavored with chocolate and coffee. Eclairs filled with Chantilly, and glazed with caramel were also showcased on Sundays. Thanks to talented chefs, eclair have recently sparked new interest. Indeed, as cake and entremet go eclair can be turned into unless combinations.
Sift flour and cocoa powder together; set aside. Meanwhile, bring water, milk, butter, salt, and sugar to a boil. Remove from heat. Using a wooden spoon, quickly stir in the sifted powders. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until mixture pulls away from sides and a film forms on bottom of pan, about 2 minutes. Transfer to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until slightly cooled, about 2 minutes. Raise speed to medium; add half of the beaten eggs, and mix until incorporated. Add remaining eggs until a soft peak forms when batter is touched with your finger.
Pipe out about four and a half 19''/48cm long eclair log using an open French tip #869, freeze. Or, pipe out eclair individually using a perforated silicon mat, look up at eclair mat with template on my Shop Page. Pate a choux can be stored frozen for weeks.
Cut out each log into 4 individual eclair. Dust pate a choux with powdered sugar right prior baking. Pate a choux can be thrown in the oven straight after being piped out, or frozen.
Preheat oven to 375ºF/190ºC. Bake eclair for about 35 minutes. Turn the oven off, and leave the oven door ajar for 10 minutes. Cool.
Melt chocolate, though it does not have to be completely melted. Meanwhile, heat up milk, heavy cream and sugar to 122ºF/50ºC. Add egg yolks and blend with an immersion blender, cook creme Anglaise to 185ºF/85ºC. Sieve over chocolate, and blend well. Chill overnight prior using.
Make a day ahead. Soak gelatin in cold water to soften, and drain. In a small saucepan, bring to boil water and sugar for 2 min. Add cocoa powder, and hot heavy cream, and mix. Bring to a quick boil; remove from the heat, and transfer into a clean container. Add gelatin and blend well keeping the nozzle down. Tap over the counter to remove excess air bubbles and sieve. Chill overnight. Rewarm and use mirror glaze at 86ºF/30ºC.
With a small plain pastry tip, make 3 small holes underneath each eclair, or slice top off. Stuff generously with the chocolate cremeux. Scrap out any excess filling that would leak out. Store filled eclair upside down, and freeze for about 2 hours prior glazing. Glaze, and garnish chocolate eclair with cocoa nibs, and cracked chocolate decors if desired (Look up at Chocolate Swans Recipe). Chocolate eclair can be kept refrigerated for up to 3 days, or frozen for a month. Best enjoyed not too cold. Bon appétit!