What saves these chocolate cream puffs from banality is the sprightly seasoning in the chocolate pastry cream. The cinnamon, orange zest, and rum make for an unusual flavor coupled with the dense background of the chocolate cream. Because these are rich, they are deliberately made small.
Line 2 cookie sheets or jelly roll pans with parchment. Place half the pasta bignè in a pastry bag fitted with a
Bake the bignè
For the chocolate pastry cream, bring the milk and half the sugar to a boil in a
Whisk the egg yolks in a bowl with the salt and whisk in the remaining sugar in a stream. Sift the flour over the yolk mixture and whisk in.
When the milk boils, remove from the heat and whisk one-third of it into the yolk mixture. Return the remaining milk to a boil and, beginning to whisk the milk first, pour in the yolk mixture. Continue whisking constantly until the cream thickens and comes to a boil. Allow to boil, whisking constantly, for 30 seconds.
Remove from the heat and whisk in the chocolate, cinnamon, and orange zest. Let stand 2 minutes for the chocolate to melt completely, then whisk until smooth. Pour the cream into a clean nonreactive bowl. Press plastic wrap against the surface and refrigerate until cold. Immediately before filling the bignè, gently stir in the rum.
To fill the bignè, pierce each on the bottom with a small pastry tube or chopstick. Place half the filling in a pastry bag fitted with a
© 1990 Nick Malgieri. All rights reserved.