Popular Posts

Monday, November 28, 2011

“Fabulous Bakery Desserts, Pt. XLIV: Cream Puffs—Gifts from Heaven”

The Grateful Dead’s eighty-ninth album, “The Grateful Dead Movie Soundtrack—October 16-20, 1974 at the Winterland Arena, San Francisco, CA” was released on March 15, 2005 and was another great addition to the retrospective live album series and FINALLY!  The movie was released years prior to the release of this album and the fans everywhere went nuts with joy when it finally came out!  We love it and think you will, too, so go out and buy it by using the handy link to Amazon.com, the world’s largest online retailer and get it now! You won’t be disappointed!  Thank you, the Elemental News of the Day.



HOLIDAY SEASON 2011


                                                                             

Here's the countdown to December 21, 2012: from today, we have 389 days to go until the End of Days, the End of Time, Armageddon, and the End of the Mayan Calendar!  Everybody, beware!





                                                                                   


                                                   STINKBUG 2011


                                                                                



Chef Elmer K. “the Hooter” Hootenstein

END Commentary 11-29-2011

Copyright © 2011 by MHB Productions

Word Count: 2,850.



CULINARY POLITICS



ELEMENTALNEWSOFTHEDAY.BLOGSPOT.COM-STINKBUG—THE HEADLINES

Elemental News of the Day Commentary-Opinion-Sports-Foodservice for Tuesday, November 29, 2011 by Chef Elmer K. “the Hooter” Hootenstein

FABULOUS BAKERY DESSERTS, PT. XLIV


 Fabulous Bakery Desserts, Pt. XLIV: Cream Puffs—Gifts from Heaven

Bakersfield, CA, 11-29-2011 T: We are going to make a wonderful dessert today: Cream Puffs.  Cream Puffs are made from Choux Paste, a thick egg mixture that when baked, expands into a large, practically lighter-than-air “bun” for lack of better descriptive words that has a nebulous, webby interior.  They take some time and effort but aren’t that hard to make once one has got his or her feet wet and dived into it.  I remember the first time I was taught how to make them that I was terrified because the chef that oversaw me was always screaming and yelling at me and I was terrified of both him and some of his recipes.  This was one of them that drove an ice-cold spike of fear through my chest because he explained to me that if I messed up the recipe we were making—four times this size—he’d beat me with a stick and then fire me.  So, I did my best to get my fear under control and took a shot at it and guess what? They came out the first time and he was impressed!

The most important thing about making Choux Paste is to add the eggs, one-at-a-time, incorporating well after each addition.  It’s difficult to describe what a texture should feel like or look like but the dough should be warm, homogenous, and somewhat soft with little or no oil showing along the sides.  It needs to be beaten so that the eggs and the butter are totally worked in and there are no signs of separation anywhere along the edges.  Once you’ve done this a couple of times, you will become a master of the process and will never be afraid again.  The other thing that most home chefs do NOT have is a convection oven which is the biggest plus for the professional baker: convection ovens have the gift of “oven spring,” the extra input that blasts the dough into action once the fan is turned on.  If you don’t have a Jenn-Aire Range at home, there’s no way the effect can be duplicated and the cream puffs you make will never quite be like the ones made in a professional restaurant or bakery; still, you have to give it a shot.

The finished product will be four-part: the cream puff itself will be stuffed with a vanilla pudding followed by a cherry pie filling followed by heavy cream whipped stiff.  Then, it will be dusted with powdered sugar and topped with a sprig of mint and then from there, it’s out to the table. Let’s do it:

CREAM PUFFS


Yield:  10 large puffs (4 rings each) (2ozs. Each) (2.25# dough) / Mis-en-place: :


Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
1.5
Cups
Hot water

.75
Cup
Melted butter

.125
Teaspoon
Table salt

1.5
Teaspoons
Granulated sugar

1.5
Cups
All-purpose flour

6
Each
Large AAA eggs

The Filling and the Garnishing:
2-3
Cups
Vanilla cornstarch pudding (or instant pudding mix);
2-3
Cups
Cherry pie filling (canned is okay)

1
Batch
Whipped cream

Powdered sugar

Chocolate syrup

10
Each
Mint sprigs




Method:

1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work! Preheat standard oven to 450°F or a convection oven—fan “on”—to 400°F.

2.      Combine the hot water with the melted butter in a medium-sized saucepan and place over a high flame.

3.      When boiling, stir in salt and sugar; then, lower flame to medium-high and stir in the flour, blending well.  Cook this CHOUX (pronounced “show”) paste for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.  When time’s up, remove it from the stove and allow it to sit for one minute.  Note: it is essential to the success of this recipe that you cook the paste the required TWO minutes; never, ever disregard or hurry up this step as otherwise, your project will be doomed to failure—TRUST ME!

4.      Now, switch over to an electric mixer equipped with a paddle attachment—not a whip attachment!  Transfer the CHOUX paste into the mixer and then begin adding the eggs—one at a time—beating well after each addition.  This takes a bit of time and should the dough become too “wet,” increase the speed to SECOND speed and beat until it’s smooth.  Note: when done properly, your CHOUX paste will look like “roux,” the flour-butter mixture used to tighten up soups and sauces that are roux-based.  Also note that the dough should still be WARM to the fingertips and somewhat “light.”

5.      Now, using a large pastry bag WITHOUT a tip, load it up with the CHOUX paste and allow it to rest a moment.  Take a couple of sheet pans and line them with either wax or parchment paper that you’ve sprayed lightly with PAM or some such other food release spray.  Now comes the hard part:

a.      Pick up your filled pastry bag with your left hand just above the opening where the tip would go and your right hand towards the top holding it tightly shut after twisting it around several times to concentrate the dough towards the bottom end held by your left hand (left-handed folks, reverse the hands).

b.      Pump out a series of four, ever-tightening concentric circles, one on-top-of-the-other, until you have approximately TEN mounds spaced about 4-5 inches apart from one another (they will expand as they bake).  The WIDTH of their bases should be NO more than 2-2.5” to give you an idea as to how big they should appear.  Don’t worry, though; they’ll triple or even quadruple in size during the baking process if you did your dough correctly.

6.      Now, place the sheet pans inside the oven on the middle oven racks (or if at home and using a smaller oven, either put both in and switch them around 1-2 times during baking or do one pan at a time) and bake for 20 minutes; then, lower the heat by FIFTY DEGREES (50°F) and crack the oven door OPEN with a rag (a width of about 3-4” is desirable) and bake a final 15-20 minutes or until the puffs are a golden-brown in color.

7.      The reason for cooking the puffs with the door open during the second part of the bake phase is to allow excess steam that’s built up in the oven to escape.  Otherwise, it would cause our very fragile puffs to fall which would be a total waste of effort.

8.      When the puffs are a golden-brown as aforementioned and there AREN’T many WHITE lines crisscrossing them, remove the shells from the oven to cool and do so on a wire rack for at least 45 minutes; then, they’ll be ready to fill.

9.      While we’re waiting to fill the puffs, let’s get our fillings ready.  Now, you can either make the vanilla cornstarch pudding recipe OR you can use a couple of boxes of Jell-O brand instant vanilla pudding mix.  Have this ready in the fridge.  You can also make the cherry pie filling and have that in the refrigerator OR buy a couple of cans of cherry pie filling at your local grocery store. Finally, whip the whipped cream according to the recipe and have ready.

10.  When the puffs have cooled, this also means that they’re strong enough to stand on their own without collapsing which is what would happen if you tried working with them HOT.  Slice each one’s top off, about ONE-QUARTER of the way DOWN from the crown and set aside. Dig out the intricate egg-based webbing on the inside and either discard it or eat it; I find the latter to be very enjoyable.

11.  Fill each puff halfway full of vanilla cornstarch pudding and then spoon some of the cherry pie filling atop it.  Finally, using the freshly whipped heavy cream in a large pastry bag equipped with a large star tip, pipe a circular mound of cream atop each to the tune of about two inches ABOVE each one.  Place the tops back on them at a slant and then dust them all with powdered sugar after drizzling a little bit of chocolate syrup over them. Place them on doily-lined serving plates and attach a sprig of fresh mint to each one and them take them out to the guests and enjoy!

12.  Note: you can make the entire cream puffs ahead of time but don’t hold in your refrigerator for longer than 2-3 hours at most as these things are fragile.  Be sure to cover them with plastic wrap to (1) keep out the odors of the refrigerator and (2) keep out excess humidity which is a bane to all cream puffs and éclairs.

This is a time-honored formula that I am sure you will all enjoy. I’ve made them for 30 years using this recipe and have hardly ever had a problem.  The only time I have is when I’ve tried to rush them and then that always seems to invite mistakes.  These things take time so take YOUR time and do it right. There’s nothing worse than a wasted effort in time, money, and frustration.

Here’s the Vanilla Pudding mixture should you choose to make it:

VANILLA CORNSTARCH PUDDING

Yield:  about 4 cups / Mis-en-place: about 30 minutes:


Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
3
Cups
Whole milk

.25
Cup
Cornstarch

.25
Teaspoon
Table salt

.75
Cup
Granulated sugar

1
Each
Large AAA egg, beaten and strained 

.5
Teaspoon
Vanilla extract




Method:

1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work! Place the milk atop a double-boiler over simmering hot water—scald it. Double-sift the cornstarch, salt, and sugar together and then combine with the beaten, strained egg.

2.      Add the egg mixture to the scalded milk and allow it to rest for 10 seconds; then, begin whisking vigorously with a wire whisk and continue doing so until it begins to thicken.  It will begin thickening along the sides of the double-boiler and continue cooking and whisking until it’s fairly thick.  Then, scoop the mixture into a shallow baking dish, cover with a piece of wax paper sprayed with PAM or some such other food release spray—sprayed side DOWN—atop the pudding so that a film won’t develop on the top.

3.      Transfer the pan into the refrigerator and place on a shelf where the air can circulate all around it.  Chill completely, especially below 45°F as quickly as possible as this is the bottom range of the DANGER ZONE, the lowest temperature at which harmful bacteria can develop and foodborne illness begin.

4.      When the pudding’s completely cooled, stir in the vanilla extract, blending well.  Then, your pudding’s ready for whatever purpose you’ve made it—dessert all by itself, pie filling, or for cream puffs or éclairs.  Use your imagination—you’ll find many uses for it!

This is an old-time favorite that nowadays has been replaced by Jell-O-brand and other store-bought ones that surely do simplify things.  But it’s always a plus to know how to make things from scratch and this is a prime example of that philosophy.

CHERRY PIE FILLING


Yield:  about 2.5-3 quarts / Mis-en-place: 30 minutes:


Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
30
Ounces
Frozen or fresh pitted cherries

1
Cup 
Cherry juice

1
Cup  
Water

.5
Cup
Granulated sugar

1/3
Teaspoon
Kosher salt

1/3
Teaspoon
Almond extract

1/3
Teaspoon
Ground cinnamon

1/3
Teaspoon
Ground coriander

1/3
Teaspoon
Lemon juice

1/3
Teaspoons
Red food color

2
Tablespoons
Clear gel or cornstarch

1
Each
Bay leaf




Method:

1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work! Find the best frozen cherries that you can that are packed in metal tins with juice as they make the BEST cobbler/pie filling even more so than fresh.  Fresh is fine but you have to both pit and stem them and then poach them in a saucepot with TWO quarts of water in order to make the required amount of cherry juice.  

2.      Have the cherries set aside and combine the two liquid measures together and then place in a large saucepot and place over a medium-high flame.  Combine the rest of the ingredients together using an electric mixer equipped with a whip attachment. 

3.      When the liquid is boiling, pour some of it into the mixer and rotate the whip on slow speed until the mixture is liquefied and free of lumps.  When it is, add the remaining liquid to it and mix well.

4.      Place a heavy-duty, large saucepot over a medium-high flame and spray with PAM or some such other food release spray.  Place a fine-meshed sieve atop it and pour the liquid mixture through it.  Force through any blobs of gel, sugar, or spice and then raise the flame to high.  Throw the bay leaf into the pot, too, and bring to a boil, whisking constantly.

5.      As it heats up, it will begin to thicken and you must whisk continually lest you miss a corner and scorch the gel.  Be sure to scrape the sides, corners, top and bottom to keep the mixture from scorching.  Continue whisking until the mixture has thickened and has gone from cloudy to clear. When it’s both of those two requirements, the gel is done so remove it from the flame and set aside.

6.      Add the cherries and stir them in—gently—with a spoon, coating them with the gel as well as possible. Then, let the mixture cool down and when it has, transfer to a sanitized, airtight container with a tight-fitting lid and refrigerate.  Use this pie filling to make cobblers, pies, or dilute it to make a dessert sauce or a sauce for a specific entrée like Chicken Breasts ala Jubilee.

This is the classic cherry filling and note, if you can’t find CLEAR GEL at the local grocery or restaurant supply store, you can order it online from Amazon.com.  Clear Gel is preferable to cornstarch as it never clouds and is the same consistency warm just as it is when it’s cold. Use cornstarch only if you have to.

Here’s the Whipped Cream recipe that every one of you should have tucked away in their recipe books:

WHIPPED CREAM


Yield:  about 3+ cups / Mis-en-place: 10 minutes:


Qty.
Measure
Item
Other
2
Cups
Heavy whipping cream

.5
Cup
Confectioners’ or powdered sugar

2
Tablespoons
Triple sec liqueur

.5
Teaspoon
Meyer’s light rum

1
Tablespoon
Vanilla extract




Method:

1.      Mis-en-place: have everything ready with which to work! Using your electric mixer once more with the WHIP attachment, whip the cream at medium-high speed until soft peaks begin to form, about 5-8 minutes and when they do, begin to scale in the sugar along the sides. Add the rest of the ingredients and stop when it’s fairly stiff

This is a good whipped cream recipe to have on hand.

As I shared with you all yesterday and all of my companions before me, I have had a great time today and as always enjoy my opportunities to write for the Elemental News of the Day. We urge our readership to write to us and leave comments and if there are any of you, who would care to write an article for us, please get in touch via Magnolia Hilltop Brewers, P.O. Box 20669, Bakersfield, CA 93390-0669.  We obviously don’t pay anything but you will be given a full byline and that’s worth its weight in gold.  We want as many people who want to write to be able to do so and we believe that by presenting a forum for our fellow chefs, we are doing something for our beloved industry.  We love diversity and hope to add new and different authors to our pantheon of chefs, food and beverage directors, and culinary professionals.  Come on and join us, it’ll be fun! Expect that when all of us have run through our cycle, we will be introducing some brand-new talent or so I’m told.

Please remember to avoid doing business with AARC Technology in Bakersfield, CA.  These people don’t care about the small customer anymore but instead put all of their attentions onto their corporate customers. It’s sad to not remember why one has the success they do or from where it came.

Day Two is now in the history books and I hope it was as good for you as it was for me, friends, because making desserts is one of those things that always stimulates the mind and excites the senses.  The one we did today is at the top of the list: it’s the best ever there is.  I know you will all enjoy making cream puffs as there’s nothing more impressive than bring cream puffs out of the back kitchen and people asking, “Did you make those?” When you answer in the affirmative, they’re stunned, amazed, and envious, all at the same time.  Anyhow—all we ask of you, dear readers, is that you please leave some comments and/or become a follower and why not spend some money and purchase an album by the Grateful Dead and/or buy a cookbook from Amazon.com.  We are allied with them and are pleased to market their merchandise! See you next time around! Bye!    

Thank you!

Elmer K. Hootenstein

Elmer K. Hootenstein

CWC, ACF, the Golden State Chefs’ Association

________________________________________________________________________

This is me in a group shot that was a collage on a chef's magazine cover from the 1980's. The actual picture of me was taken in the mid 1970's when I was working as a Food and Beverage Director at a hotel in Fresno, California. I later came to Washington State where I met Stinkbug in the WSCA. We've been friends ever since.

---30---

END Commentary for Tuesday, November 29, 2011 by Chef Elmer K. “the Hooter” Hootenstein



Please note that everyone who writes for the Elemental News of the Day is their own person entitled to their own opinions, attitudes, and insanity so does not necessarily speak for all of us.  Thanks, Stinkbug.

REFERENCES:

This original essay was authored by the one-and-only Chef Elmer K. “the Hooter” Hootenstein



Recipes created by Chef Elmer K. “the Hooter” Hootenstein on December 06, 1981 in Kahului, Maui, HI.

KEEP READING THE ELEMENTARY NEWS OF THE DAY FOR THE BEST OF CULINARY POLITICS!

http://elementalnewsoftheday.blogspot.com/

“Stinky” of the Elemental News of the Day for the best of the news, politics, sports, foodservice, hotel and restaurant business, the end times, the end of days, the apocalypse, armageddon, and whatever else happens to pop up!

 




                                                                                     

END OF THE YEAR STINKBUG


                                                                                                                                            
                                                                                    
This is #549 a 20” x 24" original oil painting by Beverly Carrick entitled, “View from the Presidio." It's among her more beautiful works and is available for sale. You can see much more of her work at her Website, located at http://www.beverlycarrick.com or at Brian Carrick's Facebook page. At her Website, you will see not only more original oil paintings but also lithographs, giclees, prints, miniatures, photographs, and even her award-winning instructional video entitled, "Painting the Southwest with Beverly Carrick." Beverly has been painting for more than 60 years and is known around the world. Her work hangs in private and public galleries and is followed by a great many fans that circle the globe. We urge you to go to her Website NOW and view her work. It's possible that you will find something you like and will want to buy it for yourself, a friend, a loved one, or a neighbor! You will not be disappointed so please: do yourself a favor and go there IMMEDIATELY! Thank you, the Elemental News of the Day!

Web Pictures V
                                                                                 




























                                                                             
                                                                                   
Magnolia Hilltop Brewers and What's Cookin' Productions Trademark of Quality and Symbol of Integrity. Copyright 11-26-2011, all rights reserved. No unauthorized reproductions of any of this material are permissible unless granted by written permission. Thank you, the Elemental News of the Day.

Chief Editor: Stinkbug.

Assistant Editor: Moses Scharbug III

Proofreader: Amos Mosby Caruthers.

Beer: Smokehouse.






























                                                                                              
MAGNOLIA HILLTOP BREWERS PRODUCTIONS

Tags:

The Hooter, Fabulous Bakery Desserts, Desserts, Bakery Classics, Bakery Recipes, Choux Paste, Cream Puffs, The Grateful Dead, Fine-dining, Gourmet Foods, Cherries, Holiday Foods,











                                                                                  
Trademark of Quality c/o the Elemental News of the Day and Magnolia Hilltop Brewers Productions 2011 of Bakersfield, California, the United States of America.











Advertisements:

google_ad_client = "ca-pub-9948168217846973";
/* Ad Unit #24 */
google_ad_slot = "7964395489";
google_ad_width = 120;
google_ad_height = 90;
//-->
























































No comments:

Post a Comment

Please leave comments! Thanks! The American Institute of Culinary Politics-Elemental News of the Day!