Cream puffs were a pretty big hit here in the US a few years back. The “cream puff-only shop” that Dorie mentions is the Japanese chain “Beard Papa’s”. It was very very popular when it first arrived. But now it’s just another dessert shop trying to compete against the likes of PinkBerry.
I liked the idea of making a minty cream filling. Luckily living in Southern California affords me the luxury of having fresh fruits and produce all year round. My local farmer’s market has some really fresh and fragrant mint leaves. They made for a super minty pastry cream.
The pastry dough or Pate a choux was fun to make. I like making dough using only my hands and conventional old-fashioned tools. It makes me feel more in touch with the food. I also think that it’s good preparation in case you need to whip something up at a moments notice without any equipment nearby.
After baking the pate a choux wheel, I didn’t want to assemble the dessert right away so I froze the dough. I think the dough sunk slightly after it cooled. Cutting the top section off was a little tricky, but luckily my serrated knife came to my rescue and all was ok.
Once the pastry was filled with cream, I topped it off with chocolate glaze and some toasted almonds.
I had some leftover pate a choux so I piped some cream puffs for fun.