Classic Chocolate Éclair
Updated: May 15, 2020
Try out this classic chocolate éclair at home.
There is nothing much to say about a classic chocolate éclair but how delicious it is. Chocolate vanilla éclair was probably the very first éclair I have had before I embarked in to my profession. When I don't feel like being too fancy with my ingredients, a classic recipe will always find a way to my heart.
The chocolate filling in the recipe below is a light and airy chocolate Chantilly which I like very much because it goes quite well with the chocolate glaze on top. I opted for a 67.4% Madagascar dark chocolate to balance off the sweetness of the glaze and it turns out fantastic!
If you have not made éclair or choux pastry before, I highly recommend that you jump on the my Pastry Academy notes on "Choux Pastry Basics" in my blog to read up on the tips and tricks to making a decent éclair. Note that I said decent, not perfect because perfection is really overrated. When you are making something for the first time, it is all about enjoying the process and practicing will hone your skills to the level you want later on. Meanwhile, learn from your mistakes and successes but most importantly enjoy the journey!
If you have made éclair before, I hope you enjoy this simple and straight forward recipe and let me know how it went. I am also excited to see what other variations you will do to them to make is suit your own tastebuds.
So, here goes!
Water 75 g
Milk 75 g
Unsalted Butter 75 g
Castor Sugar 5g
Salt 5 g
Bread Flour 100 g
Eggs 150 g / 3 eggs
Makes 20 x Éclair (12 cm in length)
Before you start making the éclair, make sure that you have made the chocolate cream and chocolate glaze a day ahead and have rested in the fridge overnight.
1. Start by placing the water, milk, butter, sugar and salt in a pot and bring to a boil.
2. Once the liquid is boiling, turn off the heat and add in the flour and mix with a wooden spoon until it forms a pasty dough.
3. Return the pot over low heat and constantly stir the panada for atleast 5 minutes ensuring that you keep stirring the paste with the wooden spoon.
note: Some of the flour will start to stick to the bottom of the pot if you are using a stainless steel pot. If that is the case, do not panic because this is completely normal. You want to make sure that while stirring the panada, you do not scrape the bottom bits that have dried out. This is to prevent the dried bits getting in to your panada and can cause irregular rise in your éclair.
4. When the panada looks shiny, it is ready!
5. Transfer the panada on to a stand mixer bowl with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed to cool down the pastry below 60°C.
6. Once the panada have cooled down, start by adding one egg at a time. At first the panada will look like it is seperating but as you keep mixing (always on low speed), they will eventually come together to form a smooth pasty mix, which will be your choux pastry. Once they come together, you can proceed to add in the next egg.
Note: When you have incorporated at least half of the eggs amount in the recipe, you need to check the consistency of the choux pastry on each addition of egg after the mix have come together . This is because you want to stop adding anymore eggs if the consistency is right. If you have cooked out the pananda enough, you should need to add in all the eggs required in the recipe, but if you have not cooked the panada out enough, you can still save your choux pastry by adjusting the amount of eggs you add in, and in this case, you probably will not need all of the eggs needed from the recipe. If you cook out the panada too much, you will need to add in more egg than required by the recipe.
It is much safer to check the consistency half way through adding the egg rather than at the end when you have added all the eggs in because if thats the case, there is really nothing you can do to fix the runny mix.
The best way to know when your choux pastry is ready is when you scoop the choux pastry with a spatula, tilt it on its side, it gradually slide off the spatula. If the choux pastry hold on to the spatula without sliding at all, it means it is too dry and you will need to add in more egg(s). If the choux pastry runs off the spatula almost immediately, it is an indication that you have added more eggs than you need, and there is really nothing you can do but to start over.
7. Now that choux pastry is ready, transfer the mix in to a bowl, wrap with cling film touching the top of the pastry and leave in the fridge to rest for at least an hour. By chilling the choux pastry it will give you a more stable mix when you pipe them otherwise they can be too runny and may spread out too much without too much volume when baked.
8. Once the choux pastry is chilled, prepare a tray lined with baking paper and transfer the pastry in to a piping bag fitted with a 15mm French star tip nozzle. Pipe the choux pastry with even pressure in to long logs. place the piped choux pastry in the freeze until they are hard enough to cut in to 12 cm individual éclair. Place the individual éclair on to a tray lined with a silpat mat with enough space between them for space to rise.
9. If the éclair is still pretty hard from the freezer, you need to leave them at room temperature to soften. Meanwhile, pre- heat the oven to 180°C. Once the oven have come to temperature leave the oven at the required temperature for atleast 10 minutes before placing the tray of éclair for baking.
10. Bake the éclair without opening the door for 27 minutes, turn off the heat, open the oven door to release the steam and leave the éclair in the turned off oven for another 3 minutes.
11. Remove eclairs from oven and cool before filling it with chocolate cream and glazing.
Cream (1) 60 g
Trimoline (Invert Sugar) 12 g
Madagascar Dark Chocolate (67.4%) 70 g
Cream (2) 105 g
1. Heat Cream (1) to above 75°C, pour over the chocolate and invert sugar. Leave for 2 minutes before stirring to incorporate. Stick bend the mix to get rid of any chocolate lumps. Cool the mix to below 40°C.
2. Stir in Cream 2 until well combined. Cling film with the film touching the top of the cream, place in the fridge to rest overnight.
3. The next day, when ready to use, whip up the chocolate cream in to a pipable consistency.
note: this cream needs to be made a day ahead in order for it to be able to whipped uo t a stable consistency,
Dark Chocolate Glaze
Water 25 g
Caster Sugar 50 g
Glucose 45 g
Sweetened condense milk 25 g