I love the Christmas season. It’s my favourite time of year but it goes by in a blink of an eye. It’s always buzzing and Christmas movies are always so heart warming. It eases all the stresses of everyday life even if it’s just for a moment. I do have to admit, Sydney’s Christmas are a tad too hot for my liking but it does mean I’m able to enjoy lovely potato salads and seafood all day. It also means being able to enjoy those cold desserts and not suffering from frost bitten fingers afterwards!
The inspiration for this recipe stemmed from my love for profiteroles and Christmas! Back before I was into baking my own sweet treats, Kevin used to rush off to the local supermarket and buy me a box of custard filled profiteroles. It was always one of the best surprises back in high school. To this day, I still have such fond memories of those occasions so I decided to honour that memory with a recipe.
How To: Christmas Tree Profiteroles
Makes approx. 40 medium sized profiteroles
What you’ll need:
For choux pastry
– 250mL water
– 100g unsalted butter (diced)
– 1 pinch of salt
– 125g all purpose flour
– 4 eggs
For filling / decorating
– 600mL thickened cream – setting aside 1/2 cup for ganache
– 4 Tbs. sugar
– 1/2 cup white chocolate chip buttons
– 1/2 tsp. Pandan paste OR 2 drops green food colouring (for colour purposes)
– Sprinkles to decorate (whatever you fancy)
The Choux Pastry
1. Pre-heat oven to 210 degrees Celcius or 410 degrees Farenheit
2. Place cold water and unsalted butter into a saucepan and mix until a gentle simmer
2. Add salt and flour and beat until it forms a paste / smooth dough that comes away from the sides of the pan
3. Remove pan from heat and beat egg one at a time and mix well – this takes a bit of arm power and patience – don’t add all eggs at once
4. Pop choux pastry into a piping bag and squeeze into equal rounds on a baking sheet tray – approximately 3cm in diameter
5. Use a damp finger to push down on any spikes to ensure those spikes don’t burn on the oven
6. Pop choux pastry in the oven for at least 15 minutes or until puffed and golden then set aside on cooling rack to cool
1. While profiteroles are cooling, whip thickened cream with sugar until stiff peaks form then set aside in fridge until needed
1. Place 1/2 cup of thickened cream and white chocolate buttons into a microwave save bowl and microwave at 1 minute intervals (stirring in between) until ganache forms a smooth velvety past – Takes about 3 minutes
2. Add pandan paste or food colouring to ganache and mix until well incorporated then set aside until needed
1. Poke a hole in each of the profiteroles bottoms and pipe whipped cream into the centre – stopping when you feel some resistance
2. Dip the filled profiteroles into ganache then set aside to set
3. Once all profiteroles are filled, assemble a circular base for the tree and work upwards to form a christmas tree and voila! Christmas centre piece made easy – I added my own self-drawn star to add height but you can do whatever you please.
4. Add some sprinkles and you’re set!
I hope you all have a Merry Christmas! I do have to apologise from the lack of posts this Christmas but the truth is, it hasn’t been the best end to the year. A few things have come up that I have no control over which has taken all my free time that I would otherwise dedicate to this blog. But, enough of the pity party – Christmas is still exciting and if you Nibblers do try out this recipe, let me know how it goes in the comment below!