I see the fancy Eclairs and I love the fancy Eclairs. They have the fabulous glazes, flavored creme patisserie, decorations that are impossibly beautiful. Those are not the Eclairs I make. The Eclairs I make are those of my youth. They are the ones my mother made in our kitchen in Jeddah, messy imperfect looking eclairs. They are the bakery Eclairs from Karachi - oozing with pillowy whipped cream and with a simple smooth chocolate glaze. I find them hard to resist even now and apparently so do my girls because we have gone from 20 to 0 in 48 hours! That said let's all be happy this is a smaller batch of Eclairs with Whipped Cream because at this rate we would have consumed a larger batch too!
Eclairs can seem daunting to make so here I am going to try and break down the process for you. None of the individual components are tricky I promise! I have been making them for years now and have tips that can help you along. Read them through and follow the recipe and you'll be whipping up this smaller batch of Eclairs with Whipped Cream in no time!
How to Make Eclairs with Whipped Cream
The Choux Pastry
The case for the eclair is made from something called a Choux Pastry. The technique is unusual but so simple.
1.) Stove top Cooking
You melt butter, water, sugar and salt in a pan - bring it to a boil then take it off the heat. Furiously mix in the flour, put the pan back on medium heat and stir with a wooden spoon for a minute or so. You will see your dough turn into a ball and pull away from the sides of the pan.
2.) In a Bowl
Put your dough in a bowl, let it cool till for a few minutes then beat in your eggs one at a time. As you beat the dough changes into something shinier and silkier and totally pipable.
I am incapable of piping straight lines so to make my life easier I use a card (credit card sized) to draw lines on a parchment paper. Then I flip the parchment paper over and use the lines I drew to pipe over. You can also draw longer lines with a ruler for longer eclairs. Then put them in a piping bag, cut a 1.5 cm opening for slim eclairs to a 2.5 cm for wider ones reminiscent of Pakistani bakery eclairs. Pipe and bake. High temperature is key to hollow out the inside.
These eclairs are not as even because I made them with my daughter, but for her first time I think she did an awesome job! The trick in general to even eclairs is even pressure when you are piping!
Tip: If you live in a humid country then once they are all baked put them on one tray and leave them in the oven, it'll take out any residual heat for harder pastry cases. The pastry cases soften once filled but you don't want ones that are gooey inside!
Whip up the cream with sugar and vanilla. Easy peasy. Just a little patience required because when you whip cream you need to start on a medium speed for best results.
Warm cream meets chococolate, stir stir.
I like used a piping bag with a star tip because then the tip pokes a hole in my eclair case and I just pipe the cream into the hollow case to fill it. If you do not have an icing bag with a metal tip then carefully make a slit along the side and fill with a whipped cream filled ziploc bag. Then dunk the top of your Eclair in the cooled glaze and let it set.
For a Bigger Batch
If you want to make a bigger batch follow the Choux Pastry instructions here and double everything else! Also those Eclairs are one of my all time favourite flavour combinations even if the pictures are quite unfortunate!
- 4 tbsp butter
- 1 tsp sugar
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup flour
- 2 eggs
- 1 ½ cup Whipping Cream
- ¼ cup Sugar Granulated where it's fine, Caster otherwise
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- ¼ cup Whipping cream
- ½ cup Chocolate Chips
Bring the first four ingredients to a boil in a small pot
Remove from the heat and add the flour all at once, stir well with a wooden spoon
Put the pot back on medium speed, keep stirring with a wooden spoon till it comes together - about a minute.
Transfer the dough to a mixing bowl, let it cool for a few minutes.
Add your eggs one by one beating well until the dough comes together to create something that is cohesive and shiny. When you lift your beater up you will see thick ribbons forming.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
Draw lines on a parchment paper (I used a credit card!) making sure to space them 2.5 inches apart and then flip the parchment paper
Put your dough into a piping bag with a 1.5-2.5 cm opening depending on how thick you want the final result.
Pipe lines (you can trim the ends with a knife as you pipe)
Bake for 16-18 minutes for slim eclairs, 20 minutes for thicker ones. The pastry cases should look a deep golden and feel hollow when you tap them. TIP: For a humid environment pile all your finished cases on to one sheet, turn the oven off and leave them in for a few extra minutes.
Heat the cream to barely simmering, stir in chocolate chips to melt, set aside to cool (and thicken)
Start whipping the cream on medium heat
As it thickens then add the sugar gradually until stiff peaks form
Mix in the Vanilla, adjust for taste adding in more sugar if needed.
Fill your cream into a piping bag with a metal tip (I use my star tip)
Use the tip to poke a hole into the side of the case
Apply pressure to fill the hollow case with cream
Dip the tops of the eclairs in your glaze (if it is too runny refrigerate it for a little bit, if it is too hard then warm it a little).
If you do not have a piping bag with a metal tip then you can cut a slit into the side of your eclair cases and use a ziploc bag with a hole cut in it to fill the eclairs.