FFwD: Vanilla Eclairs with Chocolate Ganache

Vanilla Eclair with Chocolate Ganache

by Holly on April 15, 2011

Well, my move to WordPress and my very own .com has finally happened!  Welcome to the new, improved PheMOMenon.com! None of this would have been possible without the masterful help and hard work from Barbara (Vino Luci Style via her ‘day job’ web business). I hope you’ll bear with me a bit as I figure out the rest of the changes and updates I need to format as things progress but I just couldn’t resist going ahead and moving on over.  I hope you’ll update your bookmarks to the new site and continue along for the fun. I’ve had a lot of exciting projects in the works that I’ll be rolling out over here and I can’t wait to share them with you!

I find it very fitting that my first official post on the new site is for eclairs. They are probably one of the very first desserts I ever made or committed to memory.  Granted, at the time, the filling consisted of cool whip and pudding and melted chocolate chips, but the pate a choux was from scratch.  My mom is well known for making lots and lots of cream puffs and filling them with any number of things, sweet or savory. She even often has them languishing, unfilled in the freezer just waiting for an occasion to use them.

Vanilla Eclairs with Chocolate Ganache

Fast forward a number of years (and with another birthday coming up next week, at this point I’m not sure I want to tell you how many!) and I now only fill my cream puffs or eclairs with the good stuff. Once you’ve tasted the difference, it’s hard to go back!

The recipe for these eclairs can be found in Around My French Table and comes to you this week courtesy of French Fridays with Dorie. I’m especially happy with Dorie’s easy and quick vanilla pastry cream recipe. I often don’t love making pastry cream because it seems like it can take forever to thicken, but with the addition of the cornstarch in Dorie’s version and voila! It only took about 7 minutes, start to finish (not including cooling time of course). I had time in between when I needed to make the pastry cream and when I would be making the eclairs, so I just let my pastry cream chill, tightly covered, in the fridge.  I decided to go a little different than the original recipe for the eclairs in the book and opted for my favorite flavor combination of vanilla with chocolate instead of the glaze.  No shocker there, I’m sure!

The only other changes I made to the recipe was that I like to fold in some whipped cream to the pastry cream once it is cooled.  I also boost the ‘firmness’ of my whipped cream with a little gelatin. The texture ends up being thicker, but lighter and creamier than the pastry cream alone, which in turn means that the enhanced pastry cream tends to not gush out of the eclair when bitten into as much. Personally, I just prefer the texture. I also have to limit myself with the amount of these little babies I can have in the house because, quite frankly, I don’t like to share them and can eat them all myself! To limit the damage, I made a half recipe of everything and ended up with 16 mini eclairs.

For more versions of the eclairs, visit the French Fridays with Dorie blog.

Vanilla Eclairs with Chocolate Ganache

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Yuri April 15, 2011 at 9:44 am

That first photo is mouthwatering! Congrats on your new blog 🙂

Maya April 15, 2011 at 9:50 am

That first photo is oooh…it made me squeal with sheer delight! In fact, all your photos do because your eclairs look that good.

A.W. April 15, 2011 at 10:29 am

So gorgeous! I could jump into my screen and get lost your eclairs! Just lovely!

Melanie April 15, 2011 at 11:16 am

Congrats on the move and beautiful look! Plus, those eclairs look amazing, Holly. Great job!

Barbara | VinoLuciStyle April 15, 2011 at 12:54 pm

These look fabulous; I should have worked out a payment plan in eclairs Holly!

Mary April 15, 2011 at 1:36 pm

Beautiful blog layout and lovely eclairs too…you go girl :).

Krista {Budget Gourmet Mom} April 15, 2011 at 3:40 pm

Everything looks gorgeous Holly! I think I may dream about those eclairs tonight…

Cher April 15, 2011 at 5:08 pm

Congrats on a successful move! (Love the header).

Beautiful pictures on the eclairs!

Speckle of Dirt April 15, 2011 at 5:15 pm

I also loved this week’s FFWD! Your Eclairs look great. I only wish someone would show a photo of the piping process. I think I got that wrong. I like the idea of the minis, although I only got about 24 piping 4″ in length. Your photos are great! I can’t wait to get my camera so I can do the same. Great job!

Kathy April 15, 2011 at 5:46 pm

Your eclairs look fabulous! Congrats on your new look..very nice!

Heather April 15, 2011 at 6:37 pm

I’ve just come across your website… those eclairs are TO DIE FOR! (and yes… I know I’m shouting…) Can’t wait to make them for the family. Perhaps for my Royal Wedding Party. Because really, who says you can’t eat eclairs for breakfast?

Gloria April 15, 2011 at 11:13 pm

Holy smokes! That first photo is to die for! Gorgeous. I had high hopes of making these…but time has gotten away from me. Your photos are inspiring and I will have to give these a go. Thanks for the tips on the filling.

Congrats on your blog move! The new site looks great. 🙂

Gloria April 15, 2011 at 11:19 pm

I tried to comment earlier, but it said it detected a duplicate comment? Trying again.

Your first photo is jaw dropping. Gorgeous. Wow. I had high hopes of making this week’s recipe, but time has gotten away from me. Your photos have convinced me I need to make these…very soon. Appreciate the filling tips!

Congratulations on the new blog address! The site looks great!

Betsy April 16, 2011 at 4:51 am

These look phemomenonal (pun intended), really! All those years of practice show. Your pastry is so puffy. Mine were rather flat. I wished I’d done chocolate glaze. I like the new site layout.

dorie April 16, 2011 at 9:04 am

Moves are often hard, so brava on yours. And three cheers for your eclairs too — they look beautiful.

Teresa April 16, 2011 at 6:05 pm

Congratulations on the move – beautiful layout! Your mini eclairs look wonderful, too.

Amanda April 18, 2011 at 11:25 am

Wow, I drooled on my keyboard a little bit!

Avanika (Yumsilicious Bakes) April 27, 2011 at 2:02 pm

Love them. They’ve been on my list since forever!

Kathryn February 10, 2013 at 1:19 pm

Your eclairs look so pretty. I made these this afternoon with my 6 year-old with borrowed pastry tips from a friend. I want to buy tips and your eclairs look perfect – can you tell me which tips you used? Thanks!

Holly February 10, 2013 at 1:46 pm

Thanks Kathryn! It’s been a long time and I can’t remember for sure, but I only have a few tips so it was most likely a large (think largest they make) closed star tip from Ateco. Wilton makes a similar one as well so these links should help.

I’m thinking the size 30 or 35 from Wilton http://m.wilton.com/store/site/product.cfm?id=3E30C2D7-475A-BAC0-5CFE6A7765000D80


Or the extra large one from Ateco (above). Most likely it was the Ateco one – I don’t have an actual set, just random ones I picked up individually at a local kitchen store.

Either way, the largest star tip you have should do fine. Hope this helps!

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