Sweetheart Cream Puffs
Invented in the 1540s by Catherine di Medici’s pastry chef, choux pastries are filled with rich, indulgent cream. You’re sure to impress loved ones with these wonderful treats!
1 box instant vanilla pudding (or pudding recipe of your choice)
1 pt whipping cream
1 t real vanilla extract
1 T sugar
1 c water
1/2 c butter
1 c flour
1/4 t salt
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Make the vanilla pudding according to package directions; place in refrigerator to chill.
While pudding is chilling, bring 1 c water to boil in a large pan. In a bowl, sift together flour and salt; set aside. When water begins to boil, add butter and melt; add entire flour/salt mixture to pan. Cook and stir vigorously using a wooden spoon until combined and a soft ball forms.
Transfer dough to a bowl for your stand mixer. (A stand mixer is recommended but a hand mixer will also work.) Let the dough cool slightly. Using a paddle attachment on med speed, mix in one egg at a time until the mixture is smooth. Using a tablespoon, spoon batter out approx. 2” apart on a nonstick cookie sheet and bake at 450 degrees for 15 min. Turn heat down to 325º and bake for 25 min more.
Allow puffs to cool completely. Meanwhile, whip together whipping cream, vanilla and sugar. Approx. 1 T of sugar can be used according to taste. Place whipped cream into a bag for piping (or use a spoon).
Cut puffs horizontally and place a small spoonful of vanilla pudding in the center. Completely cover pudding with a dollop of fresh whipped cream and place the puff pastry lid on top.
For a finishing touch, dust cream puff with powdered sugar, or dip the lid in your favorite melted chocolate. Refrigerate after assembly until ready to serve.