Don't ask me how my mind works, I really don't know.
|Italy recap, coming soon.|
The plan was actually to post these in time for Valentine's Day, but that dang Italy trip had me all side tracked and suffice to say, these didn't post in time. Sorry about that, the lovely pink center would have been perfect for the occasion, don't you think?
Cue me remembering my Whole Foods gift card from a promotion a while back, and the happy realization that blood oranges are in season. Ta-da! Blood orange eclairs.
This recipe will get a lot of pans dirty, and it's kind of involved, but the steps are easy. Don't be intimidated!
Blood Orange Dark Chocolate Eclairs
(Referenced Food Network for basic pastry recipe and pastry cream recipe)
- 1 cup water
- 1 stick salted butter
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/8 cup confectioner's sugar
- 4 eggs
Blood Orange Pastry Cream
- 5 large egg yolks
- 3/4 cup cornstarch
- 3 cups heavy cream
- 1 tbsp blood orange zest
- 1/2 cup blood orange juice (freshly squeezed)
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 1/2 cups dark chocolate chips
Prepare the pastry: Sift together the sugar and the flour. Melt the butter into the water and bring to a simmer. Add the flour and mix until a soft dough forms--it should pull away from the pan and be oily.
-Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature in the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat in 4 eggs, one at a time, until the dough is thick but flows easily. Transfer to a pastry bag with a wide tip and pipe onto a baking sheet fitted with parchment paper.
-Bake for 30 minutes at 400 degrees F or until light brown and puffy. Let cool to room temp.
-While the pastries are baking, prepare the cream: In a large bowl, mix together the egg yolks, cornstarch, and 1 cup of the heavy cream.
-In a saucepan over medium heat, mix together the rest of the cream, blood orange juice, zest, and sugar. Let come to a simmer, about 10 minutes.
-Slowly pour a bit of the hot mixture into the egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly. Once the egg mixture is warm to the touch, add the rest of the blood orange mixture. Immediately press a piece of plastic wrap over the bowl so that it touches the surface of the custard. Let chill for two hours or overnight.
-Once chilled, pour pastry cream into a pastry bag fitted with a metal tip, and press into the end of each eclair. Squeeze gently to fill with pastry cream.
-Heat the heavy cream for the ganache and pour over the dark chocolate. Let sit for five minutes, then mix until smooth. Let chill slightly, then use to frost the finished eclairs.
TIP: If your pastry cream breaks, like mine did on the first try, divide the cream in half. Sprinkle one envelope of flavorless gelatin over one half, and warm the other until barely steaming. Mix together, and chill. It should thicken within an hour.
DOUBLE TIP: Use some food coloring to get that deep red. I won't tell.