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Plum & Chai Choux

This choux reminds you of winter. The spiced plum compote inside the choux pairs perfectly with the chai cream and the extra cinnamon sprinkled on top. The perfect addition to a hot tea or chocolate. Small, light, flavourful and simply tasty.




 

Special material requirements


  • 2 round nozzles (I used Decora 2A and Wilton 1A)

  • Round cutter: 4cm diameter

  • Round ribbed cutter: 4.5cm diameter

  • 2-3 piping bags

  • Acetate sheets

  • Perforated silicone mat (optional)

  • Laser thermometer (optional)

 

Recipe


Yield: approx. 20 choux | Difficulty: medium


Ingredients


Chai infusion

275g whole milk

5g fresh ginger

13 cloves

5 cardamom seeds

3 cinnamon sticks

1 earl grey tea bag


Chai cream

138g chai infused milk

28g brown sugar

1 egg yolk

14g corn starch

50g mascarpone


Craquelin

38g butter (room temperature)

45g fine brown sugar

45g flour

claret food colouring


Pâte à choux

30g water

30g whole milk

30g butter

30g flour

1/2 tsp sugar

1/8 tsp salt

1 large egg


Plum compote

430g plums

70g red wine

40g brown sugar

2 cinnamon sticks

5 gelatine sheets


Decoration

200g milk chocolate (tempered)

cinnamon powder

 

Directions


Chai infusion

  1. Place all ingredients in a saucepan and slowly heat it up on low-medium heat. Let it simmer for 10-15 minutes or until you are satisfied with the intensity of the infused flavour. Since for the recipe we will need much less of the milk you can easily let it simmer a bit longer and reduce the liquid.

  2. Pour the infused milk through a sieve into a bowl.


Chai cream

  1. Weigh your chai milk for the needed amount. If you have less than needed, just add more plain milk.

  2. Place the milk and sugar in a saucepan and heat it up on medium heat.

  3. In a separate bowl combine egg yolk and corn starch.

  4. Shortly before the chai milk starts to boil, remove from the heat and add little by little to the egg-corn starch mix while whisking in between to avoid lumps.

  5. When you have added half the chai milk to the egg, pour the egg-chai mix back into the saucepan. Heat the mixture on medium heat while constantly whisking until the cream thickens.

  6. Transfer to a bowl and cover with cling film to touch. Place in the fridge overnight.

  7. Add the mascarpone and whisk right until you have a smooth cream. Do not overmix, otherwise the cream will not be stable anymore.

  8. Transfer to a piping bag with a big round nozzle (Wilton 1A). While not in use, place the cream in the fridge.


Craquelin

  1. Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix together until well combined.

  2. Thinly roll out the dough between two sheets of baking paper.

  3. Place the dough in the freezer until ready to use.


Pâte à choux

  1. Place the water, milk, butter, sugar and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil on medium heat while constantly stirring.

  2. When the liquid starts to boil, add the flour and stir until well combined. Keep stirring the dough until you have a matte film at the bottom of your saucepan.

  3. Place the dough in a bowl of a stand mixer and whisk with the paddle attachment to cool it down to around 50°C or until there is no more steam coming up.

  4. Break up the egg with an immersion blender or a fork and slowly add little by little to the dough, while still whisking. Make sure the dough has incorporated all of the egg before you add more of it.

  5. Place the dough in a small bowl and cover with cling film to touch. Place the dough in the fridge for at least 1 hour.

  6. Transfer the dough into a piping bag with a round nozzle (Decora 2A).

  7. Preheat the oven to 170°C.

  8. Pipe the choux dough as small balls, with approximately 3cm diameter, preferably on a perforated silicone mat. If you don't have that, pipe it on baking paper.

  9. Take the craquelin out of the freezer and cut circles with 4cm diameter and place them on top of the piped choux dough. Try not to flatten the piped choux dough too much while placing the craquelin.

  10. Bake the chouxs for about 25 minutes. Take them out before the craquelin starts getting brown. While the craquelin is not in use, place it back in the freezer.


Plum compote

  1. Place the gelatine sheets in cold water and let them soak.

  2. Cut the plums in small cubes and place them with the red wine, sugar and cinnamon stick in a saucepan.

  3. Bring to a boil and boil a couple of minutes until the plums are soft. Remove the saucepan from the heat.

  4. Take the gelatine sheets out of the water and squeeze any excess water out. Place them in the saucepan to the plums and whisk until all gelatine has dissolved.

  5. Transfer the compote into a bowl and let it cool to room temperature, while whisking occasionally.


Decoration

  1. Tape an acetate sheet to a flat surface.

  2. Thinly spread the tempered chocolate on the acetate sheet.

  3. As soon as the chocolate does not stick to your finger when you touch it, but is still soft, use your ribbed cutter and cut out circles.

  4. Let the chocolate rest until fully crystallised. Then remove the tape and peel off the acetate foil.


Assembly

  1. Cut the top off the choux.

  2. Fill the chouxs with the plum compote. You can either use a teaspoon or a piping bag for that. Immediately place the choux in the fridge, so the gelatine sets.

  3. Shortly before serving place the chocolate discs on the chouxs and pipe the chai cream on top. Sprinkle some cinnamon on top.

 

Notes

  • Chai infusion: alternatively to infusing the chai with spices yourself, you can either infuse your favourite chai tea bag or you can add chai powder to the milk. If you want to substitute for chai syrup you may want to reduce or leave out the sugar completely.

  • Pâte à choux: when you pipe your choux and you see there are a lot of air pockets, scrape the dough down, put it back into the piping bag an repipe. Air pockets deform your choux while baking.

  • Pâte à choux: if you want to achieve a more perfect choux form, pipe the dough into a silicone semi-sphere mould, 3cm diameter, an freeze it. Then place it on the baking mat and let them defrost completely at room temperature or in the fridge, before placing in the oven.

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