Not everything works out at the first try. An important lesson in baking is not to expect perfection and allow for the little lessons that come with each new treat.
However, I'm always the last person to remember this lesson. This dessert I originally planned to show you was supposed to have a delicious fig filling, but sadly the filling turned too stiff and the process of filling the pastry was trickier than I expected. But, lesson learned and I'm sure I'll be able to produce a fantastic treat on my next try. In the meanwhile, these pastries are just as delicious in their own right and worth sharing with you all.
Patachou or Pate a choux is a puff pastry that's airy and eggy, sweet and versatile. It's the pastry you'll commonly find surrounding your eclairs or beignets. The dough can be used for savory or sweet variations, but today we'll be looking at the sweet.
I based my recipe on master-chef-mixalot Alton Brown's recipe, but I also took guidance from Martha Stewart as well, for added tutelage. This recipe will make about a dozen.
Rating of Difficulty: 4 out of 5. Patachou involves two stages of cooking, one on stove top and one in the oven, which increases the difficulty. It also involves using a mixer and a piping bag, so some experience is helpful. It was a bit trickier than I expected, and I did have difficulty with adding a filling inside the patachou. While the insides baked hollow as they were supposed to, I suspect it takes some practice to fill them without tearing such a large hole in the sides. When I have this figured out, I'll share in another post.
Enjoy! What's your favorite pastry?