Barbecue and Strawberries ðŸ“

One of my favourite things in the summer is no doubt a smoky barbecue party with friends. Yesterday, my work colleagues were cooking up a meaty feast in the back garden. Chicken, ribs, prawns, sausages, burgers and all could name! 🍗🍖🍤🌭🍔 What possibly can a meat lover like me says no to? 😋 (Even better with a cocktail in my hand haha!)

Since I did not contribute to the grill, I paid my dues by whipping up (quite literally) a dessert for everyone there. To keep up with the finger food theme, I decided on some chocolate profiteroles topped with freeze-dried raspberries. To top it off, I also did some chocolate-dipped strawberries. The strawberries at this time are the best around this time in the year. One of the biggest joy I get from baking and cooking is to see the joy you bring to others with the food you’ve made. So, very happy that my colleagues enjoyed it! 😊

Chocolate Profiteroles with Freeze-dried Raspberries and Chocolate-dipped Strawberries

Quantity: 15-20 profiteroles

Ingredients:

For the choux pastry:

50g unsalted butter

150ml water

65g strong white flour

30g caster sugar

2 large eggs, beaten

For the pastry cream:

4 egg yolks

65g caster sugar

1 tbsp plain flour

1 tbsp cornflour

350ml milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

Decorations:

200g strawberries

300g dark chocolate

50g white chocolate

Freeze-dried raspberries

Method:

1. Start the choux pastry by placing the butter in water in a saucepan. Heat until the butter has fully melted, bringing the water to boil.

2. Keeping the saucepan over heat, tip all the flour into it in one go. Beat vigorously until it forms a smooth dough. Remove it from heat afterwards.

3. Add the beaten eggs a bit at a time to the dough, stirring vigorously after each addition, to achieve a soft, smooth batter. Take care at this stage as you may not need all your eggs. The batter must not be too runny or too stiff. To check that you have the right consistency, lift a bit of the batter up with a spoon. It should just hang off the spoon, holding a V-shape.

4. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/gas 6.

5. Line the baking tray with baking parchment. Sprinkle droplets of water over it. (This creates steam to give a crisp crust on your profiteroles.) Pipe your choux batter in small circles, leaving enough gap between them as the choux will rise considerably.

6. Bake the profiteroles for about 25-30 minutes, or until they are golden and fully cooked inside. As soon as they are taken out to cool, use a skewer to pierce the bottoms of each profiteroles to create an air hole to let out steam, and place them on a wire rack.

7. While the profiteroles are baking, make the pastry cream by whisking the egg yolks together with the sugar until a pale yellow is achieved. Sieve the flour and mix it into the yolk mixture until well-combined.

8. Heat the milk with the vanilla in a saucepan over a low heat until there is a gentle simmer.

9. Slowly pour about half of the hot milk to the yolk mixture, whisking as you are adding. Then return the mixture to the remaining milk in the saucepan.

10. Bring the mixture back to boil by heating, whisking continuously as it is cooking, until a smooth custard is formed.

11. Line a tray with cling film, and pour the pastry cream on it to cool and set in the fridge. You may dust some icing sugar over to prevent a skin forming.

12. When the profiteroles are cooled and the pastry cream is set, pipe the pastry cream into the profiteroles through the air hole at the bottom. Take care to ensure the profiteroles are well-filled.

13. Melt the chocolates over a double boiler or using a microwave. (Take care with the white chocolate as it is easy to get overheated and turn lumpy.)

14. Dip the filled profiteroles and strawberries in the melted dark chocolate. Allow it to cool and set slightly before drizzling the melted white chocolate over with a spoon. Dust the profiteroles with freeze-dried raspberries.

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