As most other treats made with choux dough-croquembouches, éclairs, French crullers, beignets, St. Honoré cake, quenelles, Parisian gnocchi, dumplings, gougères, chouquettes and craquelins-making profiterole requires that you first prepare the choux pastry dough.
Next you either pipe the dough through a pastry bag and bake to form hollow puffs, or drop the dough into small balls into boiling water to cook.
Profiterole are typically filled with a typically sweet and moist filling, such as whipped cream, custard, pastry cream, or ice cream….but may also be served as savory items by filling the shells with pureed meats and cheese.
Profiterole then may be left plain or garnished with chocolate ganache, caramel glaze, or a dusting of powdered sugar.
Profiterole are the building blocks for both croquembouches and the outer wall of St. Honoré Cake.
Bring the milk, butter, and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan. Whisk together the flour and salt. Once the butter melts, reduce the heat.
Add the flour mixture to the saucepan all at once. Beat vigorously with a wooden spoon until the mixture comes together and forms a dough.
Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl. Let cool for 4 minutes. The mixture does not have to be cold, just cool enough not to cook the eggs when added.
Add the eggs. Mix until the dough is smooth and glossy, 1 to 2 minutes. Add cinnamon.
3. Piping the Dough…Spoon the dough into the pastry bag. Pipe into 18 puffs, each 1-1/2″ wide x 1 ” high onto the baking sheet, spacing at least 1″ between each. Dip your finger in water and smooth the top of each ball where the pastry bag released the dough.
Note…The dough can be frozen at this point on the tray then collected into freezer bags and sealed.
4. Baking the Profiterole …Bake for 20 minutes, or until lightly browned, rotating the tray halfway through the cooking time to insure even cooking.
Turn off the oven. Allow them to sit in the oven for another 10 minutes.
When done, the puffs should be light, airy and dry inside…and sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.
Make a small slit in the side of each puff to allow the steam to escape.
Set on a wire rack to cool. Cool completely before icing.
5. Making the Chocolate Sauce…
1/2C heavy cream
12oz semisweet chocolate chips
2Tbsp prepared coffee
Bring a saucepan with 1″ of water to a boil. Place the cream and chocolate chips in a metal or heatproof glass mixing bowl. Place the bowl on top of the saucepan with boiling water, being careful that the mixing bowl does not actually touch the surface of the boiling water. Stir just until the chocolate melts and everything is combined. Add the honey and coffee. Stir until smooth. Remove bowl from heat once the chocolate has melted.
6. Serving the profiterole…Cut each profiterole in half horizontally. Fill each with a small scoop of high-quality vanilla ice cream. Replace the top. Drizzle with warm chocolate sauce.