(Photograph: Kate Fichard)

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I have always stayed clear of choux pastry, or pâte à choux. After all, here in Paris I’m surrounded by so many wonderful pastry shops, all laden with jaw-dropping éclairs, religieuses and St Honorés, so there seemed little point.

But I love these profiteroles’ lightness and tender crispness and their capacity to handle any cream and flavour. They are best eaten the same day – after that, the special crispness goes and the pastry becomes ordinary.

I have made a sauce with fresh raspberries, but you can always substitute with a purée of apricots or strawberries or the classic chocolate or caramel. And, of course, you might want to try combining a couple of sauces.

Rose Carrarini is co-owner of Rose Bakery in Paris and author of ‘How to Boil an Egg’ (Phaidon, £22.95)

Raspberry cream profiteroles

½ tspsalt
1 tbssugar
110gbutter, cut into 2cm dice
5large eggs
Raspberry cream
Juiceof 1 lemon
2 tbs icing sugar
250mldouble cream
  1. In a saucepan combine the water, milk, salt and sugar. Add the butter and bring slowly to the boil; take off the heat and add the flour. Return the pan to a medium heat and stir with a wooden spoon until you get a smooth roux. Stir over the heat for about four minutes until a light crust forms at the bottom of the pan. Remove from heat and use the spoon to let out some of the steam from the roux, cooling it slightly.
  2. After about six minutes, put the roux in a mixer bowl and beat in the eggs until you get a smooth shiny dough. Chill for about 25 minutes. Pre-heat oven to 190C. Line a baking tray and fill a piping bag with the dough. Pipe 3cm-4cm balls, spacing them about 3cm apart.
  3. Chill again for 30 minutes. Bake for 20 minutes or until puffed up and golden. Reduce heat to 170C and continue baking until the puffs are nicely golden and dry inside. Cool on the tray.
  4. Blend the raspberries with the lemon juice. Strain into a bowl and put aside.
  5. Whisk the cream into quite stiff peaks. Add icing sugar to taste.
  6. When the puffs are cold, cut in half and spoon in the raspberry purée and cream.
  7. Decorate with raspberry purée or a sprinkling of icing sugar.
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