Éclairs with lavender white chocolate mousse

Wanted to use the little purple lavender sugar lumps that are on top of the éclairs ever since I bought them whilst on vacation in Denmark. But I just couldn’t think of anything suitable until I thought about the choux edition of Hay Hay it’s Donna Day: éclairs with a lavender filling and with a lavender sugar lump for decoration on top. I had a hard time deciding what to use to fill the éclairs: lavender flavoured whipped cream, white chocolate mousse (last month’s Daring Bakers recipe) or pastry cream. Whipped cream seemed too simple, pastry cream would yield a lot of egg whites and what to do with those? Even though pastry cream would have been my preferred filling I decided on making white chocolate mousse because there wouldn’t be anything left-over and also because I didn’t use the white chocolate mousse in last month’s Daring Baker challenge.

Instead of infusing the cream with lavender flowers I used lavender essential oil that I’ve had for ages but never really used. I knew the stuff is very potent so I only wanted to use about two drops, but sometimes the thing you want is not the thing you get. Before I know it, four drops were out. I kept my fingers crossed but that didn’t help a bit, the lavender taste was too heavy. Not too heavy to eat but too heavy to call delicious 😉 A really disliked it, thought it tasted like soap. Usually his taste isn’t very good but if it starts tasting like soap he becomes a super taster 😉 My nearly 3 year old also disliked it even though he doesn’t have associations with lavender soap. My parents liked it though and I thought it was good too but too heavy on the lavender. So my advice is to start with 1 drop. Let it fall on a spoon first just to be save. My guess is that 2 drops would be the right amount.

After mixing the whipped cream and chocolate the mixture was pretty liquidy but in the fridge it set beautifully. So this very simple recipe worked very well, it was even pipeable. Also it stayed mousse even after 3 days in the fridge. Will have to try it with bitter sweet chocolate instead one day 🙂

The green coloured white chocolate glaze doesn’t look the way it should. The reason for this is because I used some left over ganache that I used for making truffles for my sister in law a few days ago. For the glaze I needed something with more cream so I thought to just add some hot cream to the left over ganache. But I was being impatient and didn’t wait until the ganache was room temperature before I did this so it curdled. Added some more hot cream, it started to look better but it was definitely not the smooth ganache I needed. I didn’t have the patience to make a new glaze so I just used it anyway (I know, I know, it’s a shame 😉 Also I felt bad to waste the old glaze. To give you a peak at how the glaze should have looked here’s a sneak preview of a cake I will post about soon. I used the glaze I was supposed to use for the éclairs. So if you make the recipe below you’ll get the looks of the orange glaze instead of the green one in the picture.

This is my entry to Hay Hay it’s Donna Day, hosted by Suzana from Home Gourmets.

Choux (from Essentials of Baking by Williams-Sonoma)

I used half of this recipe for the éclairs, makes about 24 small ones

125 ml (½ cup / 4 fl oz) milk

125 ml (½ cup / 4 fl oz) water

90 g (3 oz / 6 tbs) butter, chopped

¼ ts salt

155 g (1 cup / 5 oz) flour

4 large eggs

Combine milk, water, butter and salt in a saucepan. Heat over medium heat until all the butter is melted. Remove from heat and add all the flour at once and stir with a wooden spoon until combined. Return the pan to the (medium) heat. Continue stirring until the mixture leaves the sides of the pan and forms a ball. Remove from the heat and let it cool until it’s 60°C (140°F).

Whisk one egg at a time before adding it to the dough. Stir well until combined before adding each next egg. Let the dough cool for 10 minutes until before piping.

Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F). Line two baking sheets with baking parchment, using some dough to glue the paper to the baking sheet (easier to pipe if the paper doesn’t move around).

Pipe small logs using a 2 cm plain tip (¾ in), space them well apart.

Bake the logs for 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to 190°C (375°F) and continue baking until golden brown (5-10 minutes). Allow to cool on the baking sheets.

Lavender white chocolate mousse (from May’s Daring Bakers challenge, recipe either from Paris Sweets by Dorie Greenspan or Chocolate Passion by Tish Boyle and Timothy Moriarty’s)

100 g (3 ½ oz) white chocolate

½ cup plus 1 ½ tbs heavy cream (35% cream)

½ tbsp. liquer (I used left-over lemon grass syrup instead)

a few drops of lavender essential oil (4 drops is too much, my guess 1 or 2 would be good)

Melt the white chocolate with the 1 ½ tbs of cream over hot water. Stir until smooth. Add the liquer and stir until combined. Set aside to cool completely.

Whip the remaining ½ cup of cream until soft peak.

Fold the whipped cream into the cooled chocolate. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours before using.

Green white chocolate glaze

75 ml (â…“ cup) whipping cream (35% fat)

150 g (5 oz) white chocolate, chopped

green gel paste colouring

Heat the whipping cream until it boils. Pour over the white chocolate. Allow to stand for a few minutes. Stir until combined and smooth. Add a little green colouring. Mix until combined. Either use the glaze immediately or wait till it has cooled a bit if it seems to thin to use.

To assemble:

Cut each log in half. Dip the upper halfs into the chocolate glaze. Allow to set on a wire rack.

Pipe some lavender white chocolate mousse on the bottom halfs. Put the glazed tops onto to the chocolate mousse and serve.

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26 Responses to Éclairs with lavender white chocolate mousse

  1. Rosa says:

    OMG, they look so pretty and delicious! A great idea! I bet they taste heavenly with that mousse and glaze!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  2. Stella says:

    I nearly fell off my chair! Never saw such a pretty eclair…!

  3. ovenhaven says:

    That has got to be one of the nicest looking eclairs I’ve ever seen! And I’m sure that even if the lavender tasted too ‘soapy’, the appearance made it all better 😉

  4. Oh yea boy those essential oils can really pack a punch Linda! But this looks really gorgeous with that lavender sugar lump! It’s got class to go with the pow!

  5. Astrid says:

    How frustrating when a multi-element dessert doesn’t taste as it should! But it looks very nice, and I’m sure you’ve learned a lot from the experience.

    Left-over egg whites: freeze them, then use them later for meringues, financiers, dacquoise or macarons. My favorite chocolate mousse also uses extra egg whites, though I would recomment using fresh ones in this case.

  6. Aran says:

    i am inspired to make choux… haven’t made it in a while and i love it so much… lavender sounds delicate and fragrant… lovely!

  7. Y says:

    Wow Linda, that looks pretty awesome. How strong is that lavender sugar? I love the colour, and I love lavender as a flavour, though I have to agree – a little too much and it becomes altogether unpleasant.

  8. courtney says:

    Well it looks divine and a nice summer dessert. Trial and error with the lavender. I wonder if drinking tea with it would have neutralized the taste a bit. I have yet to work with lavender.

  9. What a beautiful eclair!

  10. I love how delicate the colors you chose are, Linda, and they look great together. Great tip on the lavanda, tks for sharing!

  11. Ann Chaney says:

    Thoughts from a New Zealand lavender grower. PLEASE ensure that you use only angustifolia lavender (Lavandula angustifolia). Any other variety (eg intermedia)will taste too strong. Another way to flavour with lavender is to use dried lavender which you have ground in a coffee grinder. Again only angustifolia. When making muffins for example, I use about 4 teaspoons full. Using the oil can very tricky as you found – just a slip of the drops and too strong!!

  12. Dorothy says:

    these eclairs are so cute! sadly, i don’t like choux (too bland for me), but i’m sure i would enjoy the mousse!

  13. jasmine says:

    This looks adorable.

    Yes, lavender is one of those flavours that you need to be very very mean with otherwise it just tastes…weird.

    j

  14. Suzana says:

    Gorgeous colors! I am so with you on the lavender love – I’m sure the right number of drops will match perfectly with the white chocolate mousse. Thanks for entering HHDD. 🙂

  15. linda says:

    Rosa, Stella, Ovenhaven & Tanna – thanks 🙂

    Astrid – I did think about freezing but didn’t want the hassle 😉

    Aran – can’t wait to see what your inspiration will produce 🙂

    Y – The lavender sugar wasn’t very strong, about as strong as I would have liked for the mousse 😉

    Courtney – tea would definitely have neutralized it but not enough I’m afraid.

    My Sweet & Saucy – thanks 🙂

    Patricia – I loved the colour combination of my green Opera cake with a lavender background so much that I wanted to use it again.

    Ann – thanks so much on the advice! Now I know exactly which lavender to plant in my future garden 🙂 I so love the smell of lavender…

    Dorothy – I’m not too big on choux myself but once in a while I like eating it.

    Jasmine – you’re very right about that…it can became weird

    Suzana – thanks 🙂

  16. Is it bad that I looked at your heavenly pastry and had a burning desire to run my finger right along that luscious cream and eat it? Then I’d feel bad for messing it up though.

  17. Hannah says:

    The lavender sugar decorations are so cute, I’ve never seen anything like them before! What a great way to top of this lovely creation. 🙂

  18. Emilia says:

    That looks great, the black background works well 🙂

  19. Farhan says:

    Hi Linda,

    Like you, I shy away from recipes with leftovers, and I’m always afraid to freeze egg whites in case condensed water in the container drips into it when I’m defrosting then it won’t whip!

    I must say ur piping looks perfect!

  20. dhanggit says:

    oh linda i love all the flavors in it..i just collected some fresh lavender flowers in the garden for my table…hmmm maybe i should use them for cooking than for decoration 🙂

  21. barbara says:

    I don’t like lavender in food either, but your choux look really pretty.

  22. chriesi says:

    This must taste like heaven!

  23. MariannaF says:

    WOW LINDA!! This is an amazing eclair!! I would do (almost) anything to have a bite of it now!

  24. Bron says:

    So very pretty Linda, beautiful colours and flavours combined.

  25. This is so very elegant, love it!

  26. Miss Ifi says:

    Oh wow.. those just look soooo good.. yum

    mmm CHOUX

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