- Feb 15, 2015
- New York, New York
This past Sunday while watching Victoria on PBS I discovered this towering dessert called croquembouche.
Popular in France for weddings and other festive occasions, a croquembouche is a dramatic tower of cream puffs which are stuffed with pastry cream and then held together with caramel and wrapped in spun sugar and shaped like a cone.
The invention of the croquembouche is often attributed to Antonin Carême, who includes it in his 1815 cookbook Le Pâtissier royal parisien, but it is mentioned as early as 1806, in Alexandre Viard's culinary encyclopedia Le Cuisinier Impérial, and in Antoine Beauvilliers' 1815 L'Art du Cuisinier. In Viard's encyclopedia and other early texts, it is included in lists of entremets - elaborate dishes, both savory and sweet, that were served between courses during large banquets.
Here's a modern version of the recipe from Martha Stewart as the original French recipes I found were not in English! It's quite involved and should you be brave enough to give it a try, you must assemble the dessert no more than two hours before serving or else the cream will make the puffs soggy!
FOR PASTRY PUFFS
- 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
- 7 large eggs
- 6 large egg yolks
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup sifted all-purpose flour
- 2 cups milk
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 ounces semisweet chocolate
- 2 teaspoons instant espresso powder, mixed with 2 teaspoons hot water
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 tablespoons corn syrup
Directions - https://www.marthastewart.com/339829/croquembouche