Spooky Eclairs

by Chef Rob Sobkowski


Procedure for Pastry Cream:

  1. Place the milk, sugar, vanilla bean and salt in a pot and bring it to a boil.

  2. Place the sugar and the cornstarch in a stainless steel bowl and mix the two together with a wire whisk.  Stir in the eggs and the yolks ½ at a time to form a smooth lump free paste.

  3. Reduce the heat on the milk and add two or three ladles of the hot milk to the egg mixture while stirring with the whisk to temper it.  This will prevent the eggs from scrambling when they are added to the hot milk.

  4. With the milk on moderate heat, add the egg mixture to the hot milk all at once, constantly stirring with the whisk.  Continue to vigorously stir until the cream thickens, and comes to a second boil.

  5. Remove the pot from the fire and fold in the butter and vanilla extract (if you are using it).  Strain the pastry cream into a stainless steel container and place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the cream to prevent a skin from forming.  Place on an ice bath to cool as quickly as possible. 

Procedure for the Pate a Choux :

  1. Place the water, butter, and salt in a pot and bring to a full rolling boil.

  2. Remove the pan from the heat and add the flour all at once.  Stir quickly with a wooden spoon until the flour absorbs most of the liquid.

  3. Return the pot to moderate heat and continue to stir vigorously until the dough forms a ball and pulls away from the side of the pot.

  4. Transfer the dough to the bowl of a mixer.  With the paddle attachment, mix at medium speed until the dough has cooled slightly, two to three minutes. (If you do not have a machine this can be done with a wooden spoon.)

  5. With the machine running, beat in the eggs one at a time.  It is important for the dough to have the proper consistency.  It should be shiny and sticking to the side of the mixing bowl.  Run a finger through the batter at about a 1 inch depth.  The indentation left on the batter should slowly close by the time you count to seven.  If necessary, add one or maybe even two more eggs.

  6. The batter is now ready to be piped out onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Pipe out batter into desired shapes approximately         4 inches apart to assure that the heat catches the pate a choux properly.

  7. Place in an oven that has been pre-heated to 380° F.  It is important not to open the oven door for the first 10 minutes of baking.  This can cause the pastries to collapse. After about 15 minutes, the pastries will have a golden brown color.  Now turn the oven down to 375° F, open the oven door slightly to let the steam escape, and bake for another 15 Minutes.  Be sure the pastries are firm and golden brown all over.  Break one open to make sure they are not too wet inside.

  8. Remove the pastries from the oven and allow them to cool completely.  At this point the pastries can be wrapped and frozen for up to two weeks.  After defrosting, lay them out on a sheet pan and place them back in the oven for about 10 minutes just to crisp them up again.


Dip the filled éclairs into the Bakbel Diamond Gold glaze, stripe with the chocolate ,mirror glaze and use the back of a knife to drag in the desired decoration effects.


Pastry Cream

2 qt Milk

8 oz Sugar

1 each Vanilla Bean

8 oz Sugar

6 oz Vanilla Cream Powder

4 each Whole Eggs

4 each Egg Yolks

6 oz Butter (cubed)

Pate a Choux

30 oz Water

15 oz Butter

1.5 tsp Salt

15 oz Bread Flour

18 oz Eggs (variable)