Before I swore off turning on the oven this past summer, I shared with you the recipe for Cream Puffs (or eclairs) on this post. I promised then to share with you the filling that I usually make from scratch. I have been giving it some thought, then this happened:
My dear friend Tracy's son is getting married this weekend and she threw a Bridal Shower for her soon to be Daughter-in-law. There were so many great ideas there that I took bunches of pictures to include in the eBook I am working on about doing weddings on a budget. (Voice of Experience here!) As you can see by the cute sign above, she had a sweet and salty theme. When I heard that, BINGO, the idea for Salted Caramel Eclairs came to me.
I used the same recipe that I gave you before. Here it is in a shorter written form. You can follow the visuals on the other post.
Set oven to 400°
Put ½ c. water and ¼ c. butter in a sauce pan. While it comes to a boil, sift
1.2 c. flour and 1/8 tsp. salt. When the water boils, add the flour & salt all at once. Cook and stir vigorously over low heat, until mixture leaves the sides of the pan and forms a ball of dough.
Remove from heat. Add two eggs, one at a time and beat after each one until blended and glossy. Put on a greased cookie sheet in the size and shape desired. Bake for 30 min., then reduce the heat to 350° for 10 more min.
Test by removing one from the oven. If it falls, cook 5 min. longer. Let the puffs cool on the cookie sheet and fill as desired.
The last time I made these, they came out huge! This time I piped them onto the parchment paper and made mini eclairs and cream puffs.
Next, I had to come up with a caramel pudding to fill them with. I found a recipe at Baking a Moment that I tweaked slightly to fit our taste buds.
Salted Caramel Pudding
2/3 c. dark brown sugar
2/3 c. water
Place the brown sugar and water in a small pot and cook over medium heat until a candy thermometer registers 215 degrees F. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
2 T. cornstarch
1 1/2 c. milk, divided
3 egg yolks
2 T. butter (I used regular salted since it was supposed to be salted caramel)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. salt
Place the cornstarch in a medium pot and whisk in about 1/2 c. milk. When there are no lumps, pour in the remaining milk. Bring to a bare simmer over medium heat. Watch and stir!
Place the egg yolks in a medium bowl and whisk some of the hot milk in, just a little at a time so you don't cook the eggs. Then add the mixture to the rest of the milk mixture and whisk all together and begin to heat again. Pour in the brown sugar caramel and stir in until thickened. (this takes about 5 min.) Immediately remove from the heat and stir in the butter, the vanilla and salt. Let cool slightly before filling the eclairs. You can put through a strainer if there are any lumps.
Now you are ready to fill the shells. I cut a small slit in each one so that I could put a decorating tip in it to push the pudding through. Then, I put the cooled pudding into a bag with a tip and started filling.
Once they are all filled, you make the ganache.
Milk Chocolate Ganach
6 oz. milk chocolate chips
3/4 c. chocolate milk
Warm the milk in a sauce pan and add the chips to it. Stir until thick and creamy, but thin enough to drip from a spoon. Drizzle over the eclairs. Finally, sprinkle with a little sea salt! Voila!
The soon to be groom showed up at the end of the shower and tasted these. He said, "Wow! The sweet caramel at the beginning and then you get the salt at the end!" Perfect!
These delectable bites do take a few steps to complete, but they will be the hit of any party! Hope you give them a try!
Creators of Hot Cocoa Bombs! (copyrighted)
Helen Reynolds: Mother of six children , grandmother to eleven! I love to cook, craft and create things and I especially love doing that with my family, So, when my lawyer daughter, Lindsey, my artist daughter, Madalynn, and I came up with the idea of Hot Cocoa Bombs, this blog was born. Then, one more daughter, with her technical and science skills, plus creativity has joined in to round us out! Read more about us here!