Can we all just stop pretending like it’s easy to take pictures of ice cream? It’s not. It’s melty. It’s madness. Can we just let it be what it is? Geez! We’re not superheros!
I remember the days when I just ate ice cream… and didn’t take picture of ice cream and then eat mostly melted ice cream. Those were the days when we just… you know… ate food. WEIRD!
Nowadays (I love that word, it makes me feel old), I always have my camera with me in the kitchen. It’s caked in an almost embarrassing amount of flour. It’s ridiculous and wonderful and I’m glad you’re here to see the results.
Let’s make puffs now.
We’ve approached pate a choux dough before. Remember the Strawberry Cream Puffs with Milk Chocolate Sauce? Yea… so delicious and much less melty than ice cream.
I said it then and I’ll say it now… pate a choux dough is waaaay easier than your brain would have you think!
It all starts very simply with butter, water, flour, salt, and eggs. It’s seems like a fairly straight forward pastry dough…
… until you realize you have to cook the dough on the stovetop.
This might seem a little strange, and surely you’ll feel like you’ve ruined this dough (and everything ever) for at least 15 of the 447 seconds it takes to boil the water and stir in the flour. I did. I understand you.
The cooked dough is beaten with eggs. You’ll feel like you’ve made an insurmountable error for about 18 of the 334 seconds in takes to beat the eggs into the dough.
You’ll wonder why you ever started taking pictures of food to begin with. You’ll wonder why you didn’t just adopt three cats, quit your job, and eat Twizzlers every day all day while you had the chance… UM.
Don’t worry. The dough will come together and you’ll feel compelled to pick up your camera and take pictures of your glossy success. I did. I understand you.
Warm pastry dough is piped onto a parchment covered baking sheet and you’ll wonder how these humble little coins will ever be light and fluffy. It just doesn’t make sense.
But it does make sense because look at this! It’s really amazing how these puffs transform into light, hollow, and airy pastry. We have the eggs to thank. Eggs do all the heavy lifting (literally) in these little pastry bites. Enough space in created for each pastry to be halved and filled with ice cream.
Now would be a good time to find some napkins and a washcloth. It’s about to get messy. Flour on the camera is one thing… melted ice cream on the camera is far less endearing.
It’s called the Scoop and Shoot… and it has to happen very quickly.
Would now be a good time to tell you that I ate nearly the entire pint of ice cream while shooting these puffs. It was a very tense and melty situation. It had to go somewhere!
Because enough is rarely ever enough, I think we should add warm, dark chocolate.
I’m ok with this melty situation. It simple means that you have to pop one of these profiterols in your mouth very quickly. One bite. Teeth freeze . Brain freeze. You’ll feel like you’ve made a terrible mistake (and maybe you have) but you can chew through it… and you can’t chew through most mistakes. Also, most mistakes don’t taste like mint chocolate chip ice cream and warm chocolate sauce… so maybe this isn’t a mistake after all.
You better try another just to be sure.
All images captured on the Canon RebelT5i.
Mint Chocolate Chip Profiteroles
makes 18-22 profiteroles
adapted from epicurious
1 quart mint chocolate chip ice cream
For the Profiteroles:
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 large eggs
For the Chocolate Sauce:
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup heavy cream
pinch of salt
5 ounces dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon bourbon (or pure vanilla extract)
Place racks in the center and upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
In a medium saucepan over low heat, add butter, water, and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the butter is melted. Once butter is melted, add flour and stir to combine. For about 15 seconds you’ll think you’ve made a terrible and lumpy mistake. Keep stirring. After about 30 seconds, the mixture will pull away from the sides and form a ball. Cook for 1 minute more.
Remove dough from the pan and place in the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on low speed for 1 to 2 minutes, just to release some of the heat. Add eggs, one at a time, beating for one minute in between each addition. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl after each egg addition. Mixture will be glossy and smooth, thick but still just pourable.
Transfer mixture to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch found tip.
Pipe mounds onto prepared baking sheets. Mounds should be about 1 1/4-inch wide and 1-inch tall.
Place in the oven and allow to bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until puffed, cooked through and golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely on the baking sheets.
While the profiteroles cool, make the chocolate sauce.
Place sugar in an even layer across the bottom of a medium saucepan. Cook sugar (yes… just the sugar) over medium heat until the sugar begins to melt and become golden brown. Don’t stir the sugar, just swirl it to ensure even cooking.
When the sugar has melted to a deep amber color, remove from heat and stir in heavy cream. The mixture will bubble and sizzle, and some of the melted sugar may seize. That’s ok. Return to low heat and stir until any seized sugar has melted. Remove from heat and stir in salt, chocolate chunks, and bourbon. Stir until chocolate is melted. Set aside but keep warm.
To assemble the dessert, slice each profiterole in half. Top one half with a small scoop of ice cream. Place the lid over the ice cream, drizzle with warm chocolate sauce and serve immediately.
The plain profiteroles can we stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days. If they get soft, place them in a warm oven for a few moments to dry them out.