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Chef’s Recipe : Lavender & Pistachio Eclairs from Steven Bennett, Chef Patron at The Pig & Whistle

14th Aug 2019

Don your pinny for Afternoon Tea Week (12th to 18th August) this week, ready for an invaluable lesson – How to make your own eclairs! It is not is hard as you think to make a light choux pastry and then be able to customise a delicious flavouring and glaze. Here’s how:

Lavender & Pistachio Eclairs  –  Makes 14

Eclairs :

  • 120ml milk
  • 120g unsalted butter
  • half tsp salt
  • 240g plain flour
  • 4 eggs

Preheat oven to 220 deg C.

Bring milk, butter, salt and 120ml water to the boil in a heavy based saucepan. Add flour and stir until a dough forms. Reduce the heat and continuously stir for 2 minutes with a wooden spoon until the mixture has slightly dried. Place the dough into a large bowl and whisk in one egg at a time until smooth.

Using a piping bag and large ridged nozzle, pipe 4 inch lines of dough onto a lined backing sheet. Turn down the oven to 150 deg C and place in the eclairs to cook for around 30 minutes, until golden brown.  Leave to cool and crisp on a wire rack.

Creme Patisserie :

  • 125g sugar
  • 9 egg yolks
  • 6 tbsp cornflour
  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 700ml milk

Whisk sugar, yolks, and cornstarch in a medium saucepan until smooth. Add butter, vanilla and milk; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium; cook, stirring until custard is thick, 3 to 5 minutes. Pour through a mesh strainer into a bowl; cover surface with plastic wrap. Chill completely.

Suggested flavouring, decoration and finish :

  • Lavender essence or crushed dried lavender kernels
  • chopped pistachios
  • edible gold
  • icing (colours of choice)

Divide the creme patisserie in two, and flavour one half with lavender essence or crushed dried lavender kernels, and the other half with finely chopped pistachios. Place the flavoured creme patisserie into a piping bag and fill each of the eclairs using the nozzle to make a hole in the pastry. Spread icing over each eclair and decorate with lavender, pistachio and edible gold leaf. Let the icing set before serving.

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Healing Manor and The Pig & Whistle, Healing Manor Hotel, Stallingborough Road, Healing, Grimsby North, East Lincolnshire, DN41 7DF

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