donderdag 27 mei 2010

Daring Bakers Challenge: Piece Montée

Third Daring Bakers Challenge!

The May 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Cat of Little Miss Cupcake. Cat challenged everyone to make a piece montée, or croquembouche, based on recipes from Peter Kump’s Baking School in Manhattan and Nick Malgieri.

When reading the first line of this month's challenge I was very surprised.. a piece montée.. never heard of it before ! But when reading more my smile became bigger and bigger: profiteroles !! If course I know cream-filled puff pastries !! When I was a kid i loved to make profiteroles !

The recipe for the Piece Montéé had of three main components: the pate a choux, the crème patissiere, and the glaze used to mount/decorate it.

I decided to make a small but cute Piece Montée. I filled the profiteroles with my favorite chocolate cream. This cream is made with a ISI gourmet whip and is very easy to make but absolutely great! The chocolate cream is flavored with instant coffee powder, cacao powder and some spoons of Cognac a great combination ! My profiteroles are decorated and mounted with chocolate glaze and small Smarties. The Piece Montée was a big success we really loved it I could have better made a bigger one :)

Equipment required:
• several baking sheets
• parchment paper
• a whisk
• a pastry brush (for the egg wash)
• a pastry bag and tip
• a flat surface such as a baking sheet or cake board/stand on which to assemble your piece montée
• some of the items you may want to use to decorate your piece montée include ribbons, Jordan almonds, fresh flowers, sugar cookie cut-outs, chocolates, etc.

Pate a Choux (Yield: About 28)
- ¾ cup (175 ml.) water
- 6 Tbsp. (85 g.) unsalted butter
- ¼ Tsp. salt
- 1 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 cup (125 g.) all-purpose flour
- 4 large eggs

For Egg Wash: 1 egg and pinch of salt

Preparing batter:
1. Combine water, butter, salt and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil and stir occasionally.
2. At boil, remove from heat and sift in the flour, stirring to combine completely.
3. Return to heat and cook, stirring constantly until the batter dries slightly and begins to pull away from the sides of the pan.
4. Transfer to a bowl and stir with a wooden spoon 1 minute to cool slightly.
5. Add 1 egg. The batter will appear loose and shiny.As you stir, the batter will become dry-looking like lightly buttered mashed potatoes.
6.It is at this point that you will add in the next egg. Repeat until you have incorporated all the eggs.

1. Transfer batter to a pastry bag fitted with a large open tip (I piped directly from the bag opening without a tip).
2. Pipe choux about 1 inch-part in the baking sheets. Choux should be about 1 inch high about 1 inch wide.
3. Using a clean finger dipped in hot water, gently press down on any tips that have formed on the top of choux when piping. You want them to retain their ball shape, but be smoothly curved on top.
4. Brush tops with egg wash (1 egg lightly beaten with pinch of salt).

1. Pre-heat oven to 425◦F/220◦C degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. Bake the choux at 425◦F/220◦C degrees until well-puffed and turning lightly golden in color, about 10 minutes.
3. Lower the temperature to 350◦F/180◦C degrees and continue baking until well-colored and dry, about 20 minutes more. Remove to a rack and cool.

Chocolate cream:
- 400 ml cream
- 2 teaspoons instant coffee powder
- 8 spoons cacao powders
- 3 spoons Cognac

Preparation chocolate cream:
1. Stir the cream, coffee powder, cacao powder and Cognac together. Make sure nothing of the powder is cluttered together anymore.
2. Pour the cream mixture into the cream whipper.
3. Prepare your cream whipper with the cream charger so it is ready to use.
4. Fill the pastry bag with the cream prepared by the cream whipper.
5. Use a plain pastry tip to pierce the bottom of each profiterole. Fill the profiteroles with chocolate cream using either the same tip or a star tip, and place on a paper-lined sheet. The profiteroles can be refrigerated briefly at this point while you make your glaze.

Chocolate Glaze:
1. Melt 200 g. finely chopped chocolate in microwave or double boiler. Stir at regular intervals to avoid burning. Use the best quality chocolate you can afford. Use immediately.
2. Dip the top of each choux in your glaze (careful it may be still hot!), and start assembling on the board/plate/sheet

Decorate the Piece Montée however you like. I uses small Smarties to decorate mine.


I really liked this challenge, thanks Cat!

Great to make profiteroles again after so many years! Now I won't forget them anymore and I am sure that I will make them more often !

4 opmerkingen:

  1. What a fun piece montee you created! The colordul candies make it look so friendly (can food be friendly?)! Great job!

  2. Love the addition of the smarties. Looks beautiful!

  3. Cute creation! Looks so delicious


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