Thursday, September 27, 2012

Cream Puffs (MasterChef)

These mini cream puffs are super addictive! After I had my first cream puff, I kept popping more into my mouth... then, I realised that I have been eating 5 cream puffs all within the last five minutes!

Both pastry and cream are very light in texture and they are very well balanced and delicious in combination. For an extra texture to my cream puffs, I have added crunchy toppings for more than half of my pastries and I think that they are even better than the plain traditional Choux pastry. In our house, the pastries with crunchy toppings were all gone first before the plain ones.

Both Choux pastry and pastry cream recipes are the basic recipes, published in MasterChef Australia, The Cookbook Volume One. These recipes are quite fail-proof and easy to follow but  I've spotted a typo error in Choux pastry recipe and I have corrected it as accordingly. So, no worries! 

Here I am killing two birds with one stone again... As I'm using the recipes from MasterChef Cookbook, I'm linking this post to two events, Bake-along (with Joyce from Kitchen Flavours, Lena from Frozen wings) and Cook like a Star (MasterChef). 

Cream puffs made with basic recipes from the Australian Masterchef Cookbook
Making the Choux pastry
Making the crunchy topping
Piping the pastries
Baking the pastries
Making the pastry cream
Filling the pastries
Enjoying a bite of my cream puff...
Here are the recipes (with my modification in blue)

Simple Choux Pastry from MasterChef Australia, The Cookbook Volume One

Makes 24 profiteroles
50 g butter, chopped
3/4 cup (115 g) plain flour
3 eggs


Preheat the oven to 210°C (190°C fan-forced). Line 2 large baking trays with non-stick baking paper. Place the butter in a large saucepan and add 3/4 cup (185 ml) water. Cook over medium heat until the butter has melted and the mixture comes to the boil. Sift the flour into the pan and beat with a wooden spoon over the heat for about 1 min, until the mixture comes away from the sides of the pan.

Transfer the mixture to a bowl and cool slightly, stirring to release the heat. Add the yolk (Typo error! - It should be egg) one at a time, beating well with electric beaters between each addition, until the mixture is very thick and glossy. To make profiteroles, drop level tablespoons of the mixture onto the trays, leaving 5 cm between them.

Bake for 20-25 mins until puffed and golden brown. Using a skewer, pierce a small hole in the side of each puff. Return to the oven, turn off and prop the door ajar. Leave to cool.

To fill the profiteroles, pierce a hole in the side. Fill a piping bag with simple pastry cream.

Note: Using this recipe and Wilton 21 piping tip, I can piped out 32 mini pastries and have 2-3 tbsp of excess batter as leftover.

Crunchy Profiteroles Topping, mostly adapted from a William Angliss short course that I attended

Makes 25 toppings
50g butter, soften
60g brown sugar
60g cake flour (mine has 8% protein content)
vanilla seeds from 1/4 of vanilla pod

Combine all ingredients together to form a dough. 

Shape the dough into a log. Wrap it with cling wrap and allow it to rest in fridge for at least an hour.

When ready to use, cut it into thin slices (about 2mm thick) and place each slice on top of the piped pastry. Bake pastry according to the above Choux pastry instructions.

Simple Pastry Cream from MasterChef Australia, The Cookbook Volume One

Makes about 1 cup (250 ml)
(to fill 12 profiteroles)

200 ml milk
1/2 vanilla bean, split
3 egg yolks
1/4 cup (55g) caster sugar
1 tbsp cornflour
20g butter


Stir the milk and vanilla bean in a small saucepan over medium heat until almost boiling. Remove bean. 

Meanwhile, whisk the yolks, sugar and cornflour in a bowl until thick and pale. Gradually whisk the hot milk into the egg mixture. Return the mixture to a clean saucepan. Whisk over a medium heat until the custard boils and thickens. Spread over a tray to cool rapidly. Cover the surface of the custard with cling film to prevent a skin forming.

When the mixture has cooled to 55°C, transfer it to a bowl and stir through the butter.

Refrigerate to cool completely.

Note: This amount of cream made with this recipe can only fill 12 cream puffs and so I had to make another batch the fill up the rest.

Happy Baking

Here are our baking friends that have joined us for this bake-along. Please visit their blogs for more of their cream puffs baking.

Please submit your details if you wish to link your post with this bake-along. This linking tool is open from 27 Sep to 3 Oct 2012.

For our next bake-along, we are baking World's Quickest Yeasted Coffee Cake (Recipe from the book, Cake Keeper, Pg 39 which is to be posted on 8 October 2012. Please bake-along with us! All you need to do is to bake this cake and blog hop with us on this day or within the next 7 days.

To blog hop with us, simply copy and paste this linky HTML code into your blog post where you want the blog hop list to appear. Make sure you are in HTML view/mode when you paste in the code. get the InLinkz code

Before using this linky tool, please make sure that: (1) Your post must be a current post. (2) Please mention Bake-Along in your post and link back to any of our hosts' Bake-Along post, (Joyce, Lena or Zoe). (3) Appreciate if you can display the Bake-Along badge in your post when linking up with us. Cheers!

This post is also linked to the blog hop event, Cook like a Star, organised by me, Bake for Happy Kids, Anuja from Simple Baking and Baby Sumo from Eat your heart out. For more details, please see this.


  1. I'm a huge fan of choux pastry!!! So these cream puffs are tempting me A LOT!!!!

  2. These are great! I used to have puffs without any cream filling, but it makes good thing even better! :)

  3. You made cream puffs?! I'm impressed. I have never made cream puffs, but then I seem to be all thumbs where desserts are concerned. Beautiful job, and I'll bet they're tasty too!

  4. delicious pictures lovely to snack :)

  5. This is so lovely. I will be popping all of them in my mouth! I hope to try this one day. They are my kids favourites!

  6. Wow!! nice cream puff! yum yum!

  7. I haven't made cream puffs in years! And they're so good - and fairly easy to make. Love making the savory ones (with cheese). Good stuff - thanks.

  8. Amazing cream puffs. I missed lots of Cook like a Star and also Bake Along event. I'll be back soon, once everything is settle.

  9. your cream puffs look so delicious! i'll take a dozen please :)

  10. Hi Zoe, the crunchy topping puffs are new to me, and I think I would really enjoy that! Your pastry cream looks so rich and smooth. Yummy!

  11. Zoe , these are beautifully yummy ! Buuuuuurp ! lol

  12. hi zoe, your crunchy topping reminds me of the mexican bun. I know if these are right in front of me, i will also keep popping them into my mouth non stop! kroak..kroak..kroak! LOL!!

  13. Cream puffs looks delicious perfect, I love to fill them with cream cheese.

  14. Ooooh oooh they look so gorgeous... Am drooling here

  15. Zoe, the crunchy topping is a brilliant idea!

  16. hehe....If I make these, I don't think I can stop at just 5! The calories in mini desserts doesn't count, right? That's what I've always thought, anyway. The crunch topping is so unique and I think I NEED to give that a try. those make me think of the "pineapple buns" from Hong Kong Style bakeries and it's my favorite. yum!

  17. Hi Zoe, love your mini puff, look so good. I think I can eat 6 to 8 pieces no problem. LOL

    Have a nice week ahead.

  18. What?? only managed one cream puff per minute?! I could do better than that - easily - with your delicious looking cream puffs :P

  19. You cook better than a star. That cream is the best, I have seen, in years.

  20. Tempting the crunchy topping..

  21. These look to die for! Such a yummy suprise underneath!

  22. These cream puffs look so perfect :) I'd love to try one ~ Ohhh and thats how they make some profiteroles so crunchy hehe thank you for introducing it to me :D Last time I made them they weren't very good >_< but i'm definitely going to try again soon YAY! Thanks for the recipe!

  23. Hi Zoe, I can see that these are pretty addictive! With Lena and me around, you got to make a double batch! Haha!

  24. Hi Zoe. Your puffs look so lovely, I can gobble quite a few!

  25. Hi Zoe! Your cream puffs look absolutely delicious! I haven't made choux pastry in a very long time. My dear mother loved eclairs and I used to make them for her bithday. Now, seeing your recipe, I'm thinking I might have to make them again very soon. Thanks for stopping by and for following! I'm here happily following back!

  26. it's been forever since I've made cream puffs!!!!! Def a great treat for the kids (including my biggest one - the husband lol!)

  27. Thanks Zoe for stopping by and your nice comments. These Puffs looks really puffy.. I always taste these at costco and not dare to buy because of the calories... Now I can reduce some fat and bake my version at home than store bought version. These look nice...

    Glad to join your space... Keep in touch!

    Yum! Yum! Yum!

  28. although i bake a lot, i haven't had much success with cream puffs for some reason! gonna try it out again with this recipe and your comments in mind! hopefully i get nice looking and tasting ones this time!

  29. What can I say Zoe? You make baking look so easy and rewarding... CLAP CLAP!

  30. Zoe, both look yummy and the crunchy topping looks so good..I'd opt for the crunchy top too.

  31. Lovely tiny cream wonder you finished 5 in 5 mins !!I would have finished 10:):)

  32. oh these look so beautiful! I love them -
    Mary x

  33. Hi Zoe! These cream puffs look addictive :D I can easily see myself eating all of them! Absolutely delicious!

  34. I tried to make choux pastry once but ended up with flat horrible little things!! maybe should give it a try again

  35. Great looking mini puffs. 1st time knowing cream puff with crispy topping. Looking good!

  36. Hi

    I am a bit confused here. Did I need to add the water for making profiteroles? Your ingredients list did not require water.


    1. Hi Babelpoh,

      The amount of water added and required is included in the method text. Cheers.


  37. I would be popping these by the dozen! They look so delicious!

  38. Yum! Your cream puffs look amazing! The crunchy topping sounds interesting, will have to try it out the next time!

  39. Seeing your mini cream puffs made me so tempted to make them! Love the idea of making crunchy topping, thanks for sharing this! Will do it next weekend...after mooncakes Fest. You have a great weekend Zoe!

  40. Never come across crunchy top ones too. Thanks for sharing!

  41. I love cream puffs! Yours look so gorgeous and perfectly made!

  42. What perfect little puffs my friend, they look so delicious :D

    Choc Chip Uru

  43. anything bite sized and i am all over
    not only do these puffs look cute, they look so creamy and crunchy!

  44. Hayırlı sabahlar, ellerinize sağlık. Çok iştah açıcı görünüyor. İyi hafta sonları.


  45. Very lovely cream puffs that you have baked Zoe. I just too hungry looking at these.

  46. Oh, wow, I love your version of cream puffs very much, Zoe. I think if I have your cream puffs here, I would definitely eat more than you, hahaha! Happy mid-autumn festival to you & your family!

  47. they look wonderful. These are a real treat. Yum!

  48. These look perfect...I would love to bite into one of these with that lovely cream inside! :-)

  49. looks so fresh, inviting & delicious...mouthwatering!

  50. I was never a big cream puff fan, but I had one yesterday that I really enjoyed. I'm sure I would have enjoyed yours too!

  51. Zoe,
    This is a very interesting crunchy top cream puff. I bet can't stop at one or two pieces for me...hehe
    I ever make Mexico topping on cream puff, they taste good too.

  52. Wow! All goodies in one package. My nephews will love this very much.Thank you for the recipe.