Croquembouche

Preparation info

  • A bout

    9

    servings
    • Difficulty

      Complex

Appears in

New York Times Menu Cookbook

New York Times Menu Cookbook

By Craig Claiborne

Published 1966

  • About

Ingredients

  • cups water
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 cup sifted all-purpose
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
  • 3 tablespoons Cointreau
  • cup granulated sugar
  • teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 cup hot water

    Method

    1. Preheat oven to hot (400°F.).

    2. Heat one cup of water and the butter to boiling in a medium-size pan. Add the flour and salt all at once.

    3. Cook over low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, for about two minutes, or until the mixture balls and leaves the sides of the pan.

    4. Remove the pan from the heat. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating very well until the mixture is thick and shiny.

    5. Drop the batter by rounded teaspoons one inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for twenty-five to thirty minutes, until crisp and lightly golden. Cool on a wire rack. When cool, make a small hole in the base of each puff.

    6. Whip the heavy cream until peaks form, sweeten with the con-fee doners’ sugar, and fold in the Cointreau. Using a pastry bag with a plain tube, fill each puff with whipped cream by inserting the point of the tube into the hole in the base.

    7. If the cream-filled puffs are not to be used immediately, freeze them in a single layer on a tray. When frozen, the puffs may be stored in a freezer bag tightly closed at the neck.

    One Hour Before Serving

    1. Remove the cream puffs from the freezer if they have been stored.

    2. Place the granulated sugar, remaining half cup of water and the cream of tartar in a small skillet. Bring to a boil, stirring. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, only until the syrup is a light amber color. Keep the syrup warm over very low heat while assembling the pyramid.

    3. Roll a cream puff in the warm syrup and set it, top side facing out, around the outer edge of a nine-inch compote or flat round plate. Repeat with more puffs to form a ring around the edge of the plate. Fill in the center with more puffs.

    4. Over the spaces between the puffs in the first row, make a slightly smaller circle of dipped puffs. Fill in the center as before. Continue to build the pyramid to a total of five circles. Top with one cream puff.

    5. Add the hot water to the syrup left in the skillet. Cook slowly, stirring occasionally, to 232°F. on a candy thermometer. Cool the syrup to room temperature.

    6. Drizzle the cooled syrup down the sides of the pyramid. Top the pyramid with an ornament, if desired. Serve immediately, starting with the top, or refrigerate to hold.