Cream Puffs, Sourdough Starter and Cow Snow

So, pate a choux is my favorite dough to make. It’s easy and quick, and you can be eating a cream filled, chocolate covered puff as fast as you can crack that bull whip! My mom whips up these babies in a pinch, for my dad, quite regularly. Plus, if you have a herd of chickens, you can use up dozens of eggie weggies just as fast as you can get ’em cracked open. My recipe is simple:

Preheat oven to 400*

add to a medium saucepan (heavy bottom): 1 stick butter, 1 c water, pinch of salt, 1 teas sugar, and bring to a boil. Turn off heat and add one cup of flour all at once. Stir with a whisk to ensure there are no lumps. Place the pan back on med. heat to cook the proteins in the flour for about one minute. Let the mixture cool for a few minutes.  Now, the work begins! Add one egg at a time and stir with a wooden spoon until the egg is mixed well with the flour. Then add another egg. Mix well.  Add four to five eggs depending on how “pipe- able” your dough looks. It should be very thick, but you should be able to spoon it into a piping bag and easily squeeze out at least ten to twelve mounds onto your cookie sheet covered with silicone lining. (Pat down tips of puffs so this little tip sticking way up there doesn’t just burn as they are baking.) You can even spoon the dough onto the  baking sheet. Place dough into oven for about 20 minutes and then turn it down to about 350* to allow the puffs to continue cooking without getting too brown. When the puffs have risen and cracked and turned brown, turn off the oven and cock the door open. Let the puffs cool in the oven for a bit so they don’t lose all of their steam and go flat. You can also poke a toothpick or skewer in the top to let out the steam. Fill the puffs with your favorite custard or pudding, drizzle with chocolate sauce and serve with a dollop of whip cream. 🙂

You can also add 1 1/2 cups shredded gruyere cheese after you stir in the eggs (don’t forget a couple shakes of nutmeg)  and bake the same way. This is a great savory version called “gougere.”

It has turned to winter in these last few days.

cow snow

Here are some cows on our land with Table Mountain peeking out in the background.

I was inspired by the cooler temps to get my sourdough starter going. It won’t be ready for another eight days. In my impatience, I am baking bread today. I added some buckwheat flour and I am excited to see how it tastes. I also added some of the starter that is supposed to be discarded as you feed the sourdough one. It smells so good and sour. I hope to keep it alive for the rest of my lifetime… a worthy goal, don’t you think?

starter

I have three daughters. My second girl, Taylor, will be having a birthday very soon. She is coming today for a visit. She lives in the southern part of Wyoming. She likes to ride horses when she comes around. I sure do love my girls and am so happy when they come home to roost for a spell.

IMG_2884

Ain’t she a beaut! Well, to be real honest, all my girls are very beautiful, intelligent and full of the joie de vivre!  And, don’t ever try to come between us. You ever seen a grizzly sow get separated from her cubs? It ain’t real pretty for the poor sucker that wandered in-between ’em.  Family is what matters most.

So, get cha some eggs and whip up some cream puffs for dessert. You got this!

Saddle up, Missy! We got a trail to blaze. Love ya!

Author: culinaireclaire

I am a true Wyoming cowboy girl! A wife, mother, writer, cook and guitar playing, singing fool. All my horses, Hank the Cowdog, laying hens, and even family members are a bit fluffy. I love to feed people!

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