I first ran into Michelle on Instagram and immediately fell in love with her work. Michelle's blog Hummingbird High is full of delicious stuff like this Nutella stuffed rugelach, these orange scented palmers, and this samoa matzo cookie crunch. You should go over and read each and everyone of her posts, I always want to bake more after I read her posts! Today, Michelle is sharing her recipe and thoughts for this holiday themed eggnog cream puffs that are absolutely delightful! Here's Michelle.
I’m sorry to say this, but eggnog is a relatively recent discovery of mine — as a little kid, I always thought the idea of drinking a mix of raw eggs and milk together always kinda grossed me out. This irrational fear lasted for several years and finally disappeared earlier this month, when I finally mustered up the courage to try a glass. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that I actually liked its flavor! It reminded me of the leftover milk after a bowl of Cinnamon Toast Crunch, which has always been my favorite cereal. Pretty soon, I became obsessed and began dreaming up ways to incorporate the classic holiday drink into desserts. This recipe for eggnog cream puffs is just the beginning.
Some baker’s notes:
Different brands of eggnog have varying ratios of egg, milk and cream. If you buy a brand that has more milk, you’ll likely need a tablespoon or so of extra heavy cream to get the desired fluffy whipped cream texture.
Eggnog Cream Puffs
For the Profiteroles:
(makes 16 two-inch cream puffs)
1 cup water
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 large eggs
For Eggnog Whipped Cream Filling:
(makes enough for 16 heavily-stuffed cream puffs)
1 cup heavy whipping cream, cold
½ cup eggnog, cold
1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
For the Chocolate Ganache Topping:
(makes around 1 1/2 cups, enough for sixteen cream puffs)
4 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1/2 cup heavy cream
For the Profiteroles:
Preheat oven to 450F, placing oven racks in the center and upper third of the oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or Silpat mats and set aside.
In a medium saucepan, combine 1 cup water, 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon granulated sugar and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, using a heatproof rubber spatula to stir gently and consistently to melt the butter. Once the butter is melted and the mixture is brought to a simmer, lower heat slightly and add 1 cup all-purpose flour all at once. Stir immediately using the heatproof rubber spatula, until the mixture thickens and pulls away from the sides of the pan. At this point, the mixture will have formed into a glossy and damp mass, and the bottom and sides of the pan should be clean. Continue cooking the dough for another 5 minutes over a low flame, allowing moisture to evaporate. When enough moisture has evaporated, the dough will steam and smell slightly nutty.
Once the dough is steaming and fragrant, immediately remove pan from heat and transfer the dough to the bowl of a freestanding electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed for about 1 minute to release some of the heat from the cooked dough, before turning down the mixer to its slowest speed and adding 4 eggs, one at a time, only adding the next egg until the previous one is fully incorporated. Stop the mixer between each egg addition to scrape down the bowl. After the last egg, the mixture should be glossy and thick — when scooped with a spoon, the dough should slowly pour off the spoon.
Transfer the dough to a piping bag with and pipe dough balls that are about 1 1/2 inches across and 3/4 inches tall. Space each dough ball about 1 1/2 inches apart on the prepared sheet pans. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes, before rotating the pan from the bottom shelf to the top shelf. Reduce the heat to 350 (F) and bake for another 15 minutes, cracking open the oven door for the first 5 minutes to allow heat to escape and the oven to cool more quickly. When the dough balls are a golden color and crisp on the outside, remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on the pans, placing each pan on a wire rack.
For the Eggnog Whipped Cream Filling:
In the bowl of a freestanding electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, combine 1 cup cold heavy cream and 1/2 cup cold eggnog. Whisk on medium-high speed until the mixture starts to thicken; add in 1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar, ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon and ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg and continue whipping until the peaks just hold their shape — be careful not to overmix or you'll end up with butter!
Slice each cream puff open and use a 1 tablespoon cookie dough scoop to portion out 2 generous tablespoons of eggnog whipped cream on each cream puff. Gently press the tops of each profiterole onto the cream, creating a kind of cream puff sandwich.
For the Chocolate Ganache Topping:
Place 4 ounces finely chopped semisweet or bittersweet chocolate in a medium, heatproof bowl.
In a small saucepan, bring 1/2 cup heavy cream to a gentle boil over medium heat. When the cream is boiling, remove immediately from heat and pour over the finely chopped chocolate, using a whisk to mix the cream into the chocolate until it melts and is a uniform, rich brown color.
Add 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract and whisk to incorporate into the mixture. Set aside to cool slightly before using by drizzling or scooping over each individual cream puff.
Thanks for stopping by!
For baker’s notes and more recipes, please visit www.hummingbirdhigh.com