Monday, February 22, 2016

Blood Orange Dark Chocolate Eclairs


To prepare for my trip to Italy, I decided to try my hand at baking a French pastry.

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?

I've always wanted to make my own eclairs, as they've long been my absolute favorite dessert (with cannoli and macarons close behind, of course), but to BLOG about, I knew I had to do something special. Since anyone can google a basic eclair recipe, I'm sure.

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

Ganache Topping

  • 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.


  1. Oh my goodness, what a delicious twist on a classic! I hope your trip to Italy was marvelous!

  2. I LOVE eclairs, and blood oranges are SO good, I bet that filling was amazing!!

  3. These look so pretty and that flavor combo sound delish! I would have never thought to put them in an eclair!

  4. I love blood oranges - these are so pretty!

  5. I'm going to get brave & try this. It sounds soooo good!! xo

  6. Well I guess many pans dirty in your kitchen got paid by these wonderful eclairs, right? :)

  7. I can't wait for the recap you lucky, lucky duck. I love this recipe. It looks utterly stunning. I can't wait to try it.

  8. This is my kind of chocolate combo! I love blood orange!

  9. These are so pretty! I'm obsessed with blood oranges!

  10. Love Italy and I love your eclairs, nicely done!!

  11. These are seriously dreamy. Where in Italy? Love that country.

  12. Love the way your mind works! Cannolis are my favorite with eclairs a close second. I have never tried to make them but will now with this awesome recipe! Love the blood orange twist!

  13. Look forward to your recap! These eclairs are beeee-u-tiful! What a great idea to flavor them with blood oranges (yum)!

  14. Those look delicious -- and the filling is beautiful!

  15. Hey this sucked, ONLY tasted like cornstarch.....and why do you need corn starch for a custard??? THAT'S WHAT THE EGGS ARE FOR. Had to try it to see for myself so THAT'S on me but from now on...if my first custard breaks I'll just practice more until I make it work.
    Nothing I did saved this mix (more orange juice, orange zest, salt, added lemon, eventually some extract out of pure frustration) so, be warned. Corn starch/gelatin might guarantee a set custard/pudding but you sacrifice taste for sure.