Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream


 
Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream. These easy cream puffs, topped with crispy craquelin, are stuffed full with a salted caramel pastry cream, which is folded into softly whipped cream to form salted caramel diplomat cream. #creampuffs #chouxaucraquelin #saltedcaramel #diplomatcream
Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream. These easy cream puffs, topped with crispy craquelin, are stuffed full with a salted caramel pastry cream, which is folded into softly whipped cream to form salted caramel diplomat cream. #creampuffs #chouxaucraquelin #saltedcaramel #diplomatcream
Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream. These easy cream puffs, topped with crispy craquelin, are stuffed full with a salted caramel pastry cream, which is folded into softly whipped cream to form salted caramel diplomat cream. #creampuffs #chouxaucraquelin #saltedcaramel #diplomatcream
Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream. These easy cream puffs, topped with crispy craquelin, are stuffed full with a salted caramel pastry cream, which is folded into softly whipped cream to form salted caramel diplomat cream. #creampuffs #chouxaucraquelin #saltedcaramel #diplomatcream
Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream. These easy cream puffs, topped with crispy craquelin, are stuffed full with a salted caramel pastry cream, which is folded into softly whipped cream to form salted caramel diplomat cream. #creampuffs #chouxaucraquelin #saltedcaramel #diplomatcream
Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream. These easy cream puffs, topped with crispy craquelin, are stuffed full with a salted caramel pastry cream, which is folded into softly whipped cream to form salted caramel diplomat cream. #creampuffs #chouxaucraquelin #saltedcaramel #diplomatcream
Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream. These easy cream puffs, topped with crispy craquelin, are stuffed full with a salted caramel pastry cream, which is folded into softly whipped cream to form salted caramel diplomat cream. #creampuffs #chouxaucraquelin #saltedcaramel #diplomatcream
Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream. These easy cream puffs, topped with crispy craquelin, are stuffed full with a salted caramel pastry cream, which is folded into softly whipped cream to form salted caramel diplomat cream. #creampuffs #chouxaucraquelin #saltedcaramel #diplomatcream
Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream. These easy cream puffs, topped with crispy craquelin, are stuffed full with a salted caramel pastry cream, which is folded into softly whipped cream to form salted caramel diplomat cream. #creampuffs #chouxaucraquelin #saltedcaramel #diplomatcream

Hi hi! I am popping on here to share a super fun recipe that I am really excited about - Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin, aka Cream Puffs with a Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream! Cream puffs really are one of my favourite things to make. There’s something just so fascinating about putting little blobs of dough into the oven and seeing them come out as light, airy, crunchy balls of deliciousness, ready to be filled with anything that you like!

The real magic comes from the craquelin layer on the top of these wee dudes. Basically it is a simple cookie dough, that you roll out super thin, then freeze, cut into discs, and place onto the tops of the piped out choux dough. As the choux buns bake, the craquelin drapes over the bun, helping it to rise in a perfect circle (which is why they are always nice and round compared to their knobbly cream puff friends), and baking up into a crispy, crackly layer that is so hard to resist, and is the perfect textural element to go along with the crisp choux pastry and the silky filling - in this particular case, a salted caramel diplomat cream, which is essentially a pastry cream which has been lightened with whipped cream. To make a salted caramel pastry cream, you make a very liquidy caramel, and then use that in the place of the milk in a pastry cream. It’s an extra wee step, but oh my is it worth it - the pastry cream itself is out of this world, but is elevated even more when it is folded through mounds of whipped cream, to create the most perfect salted caramel cream puff filling you could ever imagine.

These wee choux au craquelin have a very special ingredient in them - the brand spanking new Domino® Golden Sugar! Golden sugar is essentially a less processed version of the sugar that we know and love. It is made from pure cane sugar, and because it is less processed, it has the most beautiful golden colour, and slight hint of molasses flavour. It can be used as a cup for cup sub in all baking applications where white sugar can be used - I used it in all of the elements of these choux au craquelin!

The Domino® Golden Sugar made the most beautiful toasty salted caramel which was the base of the salted caramel pastry cream, and I used it in the craquelin where I would usually use brown sugar, and was so amazed at the results - the delicious flavour from the sugar really shone through in the crackly tops, and the light golden colour was such a nice contrast against the golden brown choux buns, which baked up perfectly with the golden sugar added into the choux dough. I can’t wait to use it in more ways in my kitchen!

A few wee tips:

  • The process of making the salted caramel pastry cream is pretty similar to a regular pastry cream, except that the caramel acts as the ‘milk’ in the pastry cream - so instead of pouring warm milk into the yolk mix to make the pastry cream and temper the eggs, the caramel is used instead.

  • Use a bigger pot than you think you need for the caramel, as the quantity of cream and milk needed to deglaze the caramel is quite a lot, so you need the space - I learnt this the hard way!

  • In the ingredients, I have added in a ‘just in case’ egg. Sometimes when you are making choux dough you will need to add an extra egg to the mixture in order to get it to the right consistency - you want it to form a ‘v’ that eventually breaks off when you lift the paddle from the mixture. If it is not wet enough (ie you need to add more egg), you won’t get that nice v shape and the dough will be stiff and break off easily. I usually start with the 240g called for in the recipe, test it, then add the extra beaten egg if needed.

  • I just got a new oven, so I was able to bake both of these trays of choux buns at the same time - I switched the trays around half way through the first 15 minutes at 400°f, and again during the final bake at 350°f. If your oven isn’t super consistent, you can absolutely bake these off one at a time - what you want to do is to pipe out both trays of choux dough, but only top the one you are going to bake with craquelin. The ones without craquelin can be held at room temp until you are ready to bake - just add the craquelin just before you pop them into the oven. Don’t forget to increase the temperature back to 400°f before you bake the second tray.

  • If you can, leave the filling of the cream puffs until close to when you are planning on serving them. I like to prepare the diplomat cream, place a clip just above the piping tip of the piping bag, and then add the cream into the bag. I then give the top a quick twist, and secure with another clip - this way the cream is in the bag, ready to go, making the assembly step easy. However if you are in a pinch and need to prepare these earlier, store them in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to serve.

 

 

Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream

- Makes 24-28 cream puffs -

Salted Caramel Pastry Cream
450g whole milk
300g heavy cream
315g Domino® Golden Sugar
2 tsp salt
55g cornstarch
90g Domino® Golden Sugar
1 egg
75g egg yolks (about 4 yolks)
1 tsp vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
30g unsalted butter, at room temperature

Golden Sugar Craquelin
100g unsalted butter, at room temperature
120g all-purpose flour
120g Domino® Golden Sugar
1 tsp vanilla bean paste

Choux Dough
125g whole milk
125g water
110g unsalted butter, cubed
5g Kosher Salt
5g vanilla bean paste
15g Sugar
165g All-purpose flour
240g eggs, lightly beaten, plus more if required (see tips)

Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream
675g salted caramel pastry cream
375g heavy whipping cream

Powdered sugar to dust (optional) 

- PROCESS -

SALTED CARAMEL PASTRY CREAM

Place the whole milk and cream in a small saucepan, and place over low heat. You do not want to boil the mixture - you just want to warm it so that when it hits the hot caramel, it does not seize.

Place the first measure of Domino® Golden Sugar into a medium heavy bottomed saucepan, and place over medium to low heat. Heat, stirring constantly. The sugar will start to form clumps, then begin to melt. Cook until is it amber in colour, then remove from the heat and add the warmed milk and cream mixture, whisking briskly to help it incorporate (it will take a lot of whisking to emulsify in). Set aside briefly while you prepare the egg mixture to make the pastry cream.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the salt, the second measure of Domino® Golden Sugar and the corn starch, then add the egg, egg yolks and vanilla, and mix well to combine.

Whisking constantly, add half of the caramel mixture into the egg and cornflour mixture to temper the egg yolks. Whisk briskly for 30 seconds. Transfer the caramel-yolk mixture back to the pot, and return to a medium heat. Whisk constantly until very thick. 

Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter, mixing well until totally combined. Allow to stand for 5-10 minutes, whisking occasionally. Strain into an airtight container and refrigerate until completely chilled.

CRAQUELIN

Place all ingredients in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium until combined. Turn out the dough onto a large piece of parchment paper, and top with a second piece. Roll out to 1-2mm in thickness. Place the dough, still between the parchment sheets, in the freezer for an hour, or until ready to use (Can be made ahead of time and stored in the freezer).

CHOUX AU CRAQUELIN

Preheat the oven to 400°f / 200°c. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Using a cookie cutter, trace 1 3/4” circles on each baking sheet using a pen or a pencil, leaving some room for spreading (about 2” between each), then flip over the baking sheet so that the side with the drawing is facing downward. 

Fit a large piping bag with a large round piping tip such as an ateco #805.

In a medium pot, combine the milk, water, butter, salt, vanilla bean paste, and Domino® Golden Sugar. Place over medium heat, and stir until the butter has melted and the mixture has begun to boil. Remove from the heat, and add the flour all at once, mixing quickly with a wooden spoon to combine. The mixture will form a thick paste. 

Return to the heat, and, stirring constantly, cook the mixture for 2 minutes to help dry it out. Transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed for 1 minute to help cool down the mixture. 

With the mixture running on low, slowly stream in the 240g egg. Mix on medium speed for 4 minutes, or until the egg is fully incorporated. Test the consistency of the batter by dipping in the beater and pulling up. If it forms a v which eventually breaks off, you are good to go. If it seems too stiff, slowly add another beaten egg and mix to incorporate. 

Transfer the choux dough to the prepared piping bag. Use a little of the choux to stick down the parchment paper at the corners. Using your traced circle as a guide, pipe mounds onto the baking sheet, ending each with a little flick of your wrist. Repeat with the second tray - you should end up with about 24 mounds. 

Remove the craquelin from the freezer, and peel off the top piece of parchment. Using the same sized cutter you used to trace the circles on the parchment paper, cut out circles of dough. Place each carefully on top of a mound of choux, pressing lightly to adhere. If you are baking one tray of these at a time, ensure that you only put the craquelin on one tray’s worth at a time - put the craquelin on the second tray just before you bake them.

Bake the cream puffs for 15 min at 400˚f / 200˚c, then turn down the oven to 350˚f / 180˚c, and bake for a further 20 minutes, until the puffs are deeply golden. Remove from the oven and poke a small vent in the side of each using a paring knife or chopstick, to help the steam escape. Place on a cooling rack to cool completely. If baking in two batches, return the oven to 400°f / 200°c, and repeat the baking process with the remaining buns. 

SALTED CARAMEL DIPLOMAT CREAM

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the cream until stiff peaks form. Remove the bowl from the mixer. Briefly mix up the caramel pastry cream to loosen, and then carefully fold the pastry cream through the whipped cream, until combined. Transfer to a large piping bag fitted with a bismarck tip or a round piping tip.

ASSEMBLY

Using a chopstick, carefully poke a hole in the bottom of each cream puff. Working with one at a time, insert the end of the piping tip into the cream puff, and pipe the diplomat cream in until you feel the cream puff fill and become heavy. It will take a few to get the hang of it - just wipe off any excess that may spill out from over filled puffs.

Lightly dust the cream puffs with powdered sugar.

Serve within a few hours of filling. Store leftovers in the fridge in an airtight container.

Golden Sugar Choux au Craquelin - Cream Puffs with Salted Caramel Diplomat Cream. These easy cream puffs, topped with crispy craquelin, are stuffed full with a salted caramel pastry cream, which is folded into softly whipped cream to form salted caramel diplomat cream. #creampuffs #chouxaucraquelin #saltedcaramel #diplomatcream

Thank you so much to Domino Sugar for Sponsoring this post! All opinions are my own.

Roasted Strawberry Brioche Doughnuts with Vanilla Bean Pastry Cream and Strawberry Sugar


 
Brioche Doughnuts with Vanilla Bean Pastry Cream and Roasted Strawberry Filling. Roasting strawberries brings out the most amazing sweet flavour, which pairs so perfectly with the smooth vanilla bean pastry cream and fluffy brioche doughnut dough which is rolled in a freeze dried strawberry sugar. #briochedoughnut #strawberrydoughnut #roastedstrawberry
Brioche Doughnuts with Vanilla Bean Pastry Cream and Roasted Strawberry Filling. Roasting strawberries brings out the most amazing sweet flavour, which pairs so perfectly with the smooth vanilla bean pastry cream and fluffy brioche doughnut dough which is rolled in a freeze dried strawberry sugar. #briochedoughnut #strawberrydoughnut #roastedstrawberry
Brioche Doughnuts with Vanilla Bean Pastry Cream and Roasted Strawberry Filling. Roasting strawberries brings out the most amazing sweet flavour, which pairs so perfectly with the smooth vanilla bean pastry cream and fluffy brioche doughnut dough which is rolled in a freeze dried strawberry sugar. #briochedoughnut #strawberrydoughnut #roastedstrawberry
Brioche Doughnuts with Vanilla Bean Pastry Cream and Roasted Strawberry Filling. Roasting strawberries brings out the most amazing sweet flavour, which pairs so perfectly with the smooth vanilla bean pastry cream and fluffy brioche doughnut dough which is rolled in a freeze dried strawberry sugar. #briochedoughnut #strawberrydoughnut #roastedstrawberry
Brioche Doughnuts with Vanilla Bean Pastry Cream and Roasted Strawberry Filling. Roasting strawberries brings out the most amazing sweet flavour, which pairs so perfectly with the smooth vanilla bean pastry cream and fluffy brioche doughnut dough which is rolled in a freeze dried strawberry sugar. #briochedoughnut #strawberrydoughnut #roastedstrawberry
Brioche Doughnuts with Vanilla Bean Pastry Cream and Roasted Strawberry Filling. Roasting strawberries brings out the most amazing sweet flavour, which pairs so perfectly with the smooth vanilla bean pastry cream and fluffy brioche doughnut dough which is rolled in a freeze dried strawberry sugar. #briochedoughnut #strawberrydoughnut #roastedstrawberry

How is it already August?!? Don’t get me wrong - August is my fave (I’m an August baby so it’s birthday month!), but holy moly this year has just sped past. Next week I am going on a little road trip up to Hudson for a few days which I am super excited about, and then we have a wedding in Philadelpia, and then I get to go to ALASKA with Bake from Scratch for a few days, and then, before I know it, August will be over!

I’ve been sitting on this one for a while, and decided I couldn’t possibly wait any longer to share it with you - that I had to share it while strawberries are still in their prime here in the states! Roasting up fruit is one of my favourite ways to use up that box of berries / fruit you may have in your fridge that is nearly past it’s prime - the giant flat of berries you bought with good intentions for, and haven’t quite managed to use up, or that big box of peaches you are working your way through but it’s taking forever. Just me? Surely not.

The recipe for these came about as we were planning on leaving for our holiday to Canada, and I had a giant box of strawberries to use up, so I roasted them off, and paired them with a vanilla bean pastry cream (classic but great combo). I then stuffed both of these things into a fluffy brioche doughnut, which I made with my go-to brioche recipe (best ever), which I tossed in a sugar and freeze dried strawberry mixture, which gave them the prettiest pink hue, and helped to drive the flavour home. Roasted fruit and pastry cream in a doughnut is a sure fire winner - the great and easy thing about it is that it is super adaptable, this recipe would work with almost any roasted fruit, or you can leave it out entirely and just go for a plain custard / pastry cream filled doughnut. You really can’t lose.

A few wee tips:

  • I rolled these in a strawberry sugar which I made with freeze dried strawberry powder and sugar. If you don’t have freeze dried strawberry powder on hand, regular sugar is fine!

  • I made the brioche dough the night before, and did the first rise overnight in the fridge, which makes the process feel a little less involved. Alternatively you can make the dough the day of and do both rises in one day.

  • Either a thermometer or a deep fryer is needed for the frying process - I got a deep fryer recently and it is great, but if you are just frying in a pot, I like to use cast iron as it holds the heat nicely and helps keep the oil at a consistent temperature.

  • The strawberries are super, super delicious and are great for using up nearly past it fruit - the recipe can be easily doubled and the mixture kept in the fridge.

  • If strawberries aren’t in season, you can likely roast frozen strawberries! It will help to bring out the flavour a lot - I would thaw them first. Alternatively, a strawberry jam as a filling would work great too.

 

 

Roasted Strawberry Brioche Doughnuts with Vanilla Bean Pastry Cream

- Makes about 12 -

Pastry cream adapted from Bouchon bakery

Roasted Strawberry Filling
600g fresh strawberries, diced
50g sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste
pinch of salt

Vanilla Bean Pastry Cream
132g egg yolks (about 8 yolks)
110g sugar
37g corn starch
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
550g whole milk
27g unsalted butter, at room temperature

Brioche Dough

1 envelope (2 1/4 tsp) active dry yeast
250g (1 cup) whole milk, lukewarm
4 Tbsp (50g) sugar
565g (3 3/4 cups) all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
90g (6 tbsp) unsalted butter, at room temperature
Neutral Oil for Frying

Strawberry Sugar
250g sugar
1 Tbsp freeze dried strawberry powder (I used this one)

 

- PROCESS -

ROASTED STRAWBERRIES

Preheat the oven to 350°f / 180°c. Line a sheet pan with tin foil. In a medium bowl, toss together the strawberries, sugar, vanilla bean paste, and salt. Spread onto the sheet pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the fruit and juices are bubbling. Transfer to an airtight container and chill until ready to use.

VANILLA BEAN PASTRY CREAM

In a large bowl, whisk together the yolks, sugar and cornflour in a bowl. 

In a medium pot, warm the milk and vanilla paste until there is movement just around the edges of the milk - do not bring it to the boil. 

Remove the milk from the heat, and, whisking constantly, add half of the milk mixture into the egg and cornflour mixture to temper the egg yolks. Whisk briskly for 30 seconds. Transfer the milk-yolk mixture back to the pot, and return to a medium heat. Whisk constantly until very thick. 

Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter, mixing well until totally combined. Allow to stand for 5-10 minutes, whisking occasionally. Transfer to an airtight container and allow to cool completely.

BRIOCHE DOUGH

In a small bowl, combine the yeast, milk and 2 Tbsp of the sugar. Mix well, and leave to sit for 10-15 minutes, or until foamy.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the flour, salt, and remaining 2 Tbsp sugar. Mix briefly to combine. Add the eggs, vanilla, and foamy yeast mixture to the bowl. Mix on low for 2-3 minutes, until the dough is starting to come together. It may look slightly dry but do not worry - it will mix together nicely in the next steps. Increase the mixer speed to medium, and mix for another 10 minutes, until the dough is soft and smooth.

Reduce the mixer speed to low, and add the butter a little at a time, waiting until it is fully incorporated into the dough before adding the next piece. This process should take 3-4 minutes. Once the butter is fully incorporated, increase the mixer speed to medium, and mix for a further 5 minutes, until the dough is very soft and smooth.

Transfer to an oiled bowl, and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Place in a warm spot until doubled in size, approximately 1 - 1 1/2 hours. Alternatively the first rise can be done overnight in the fridge.

Turn the dough out onto a well floured surface. Weigh the dough, and divide into 12 equal weight portions. Roll each portion into a tight ball. Place the rolled doughnuts on a baking tray sheet with parchment paper, leaving adequate space between (you may need two baking sheets).

Leave the doughnuts to proof for a further 20 minutes. When you poke them lightly with your finger, it should leave a small indentation that springs back.

While the doughnuts are proofing, heat neutral oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot (cast iron works great). Heat the oil to 350°f / 180°c. Place a wire rack over a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place the sugar and freeze dried strawberry powder in a shallow bowl.

Once the oil has come to temperature, test it with a few scraps of dough. Gently lower the doughnuts, two at a time, into the hot oil. Cook , flipping every 30 seconds, for 3-4 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from the oil using a slotted spoon and place on a cooling rack. Allow to cool for 30 seconds before tossing in the sugar. Repeat the process with the rest of the doughnuts. Once the doughnuts are totally cool, poke a hole in them using a chopstick, and widen the hole using your finger.

 

FILLING AND ASSEMBLY

Transfer the roasted strawberry mixture into a piping bag either with the end cut off or fitted with a very large round piping tip (I found it works best to just snip the end off rather than try and use a piping tip as then if you get the bag clogged by a piece of fruit, you can just squish it through the bag). Transfer the pastry cream to a piping bag fitted with a medium round tip.

Pipe some strawberry filling into each doughnut, then fill up the remainder of the cavity with pastry cream, finishing with a little dot of pastry cream on the top of each doughnut. Garnish each with a piece of the leftover strawberry, if desired.

Best eaten on the day that they are made.

Brioche Doughnuts with Vanilla Bean Pastry Cream and Roasted Strawberry Filling. Roasting strawberries brings out the most amazing sweet flavour, which pairs so perfectly with the smooth vanilla bean pastry cream and fluffy brioche doughnut dough which is rolled in a freeze dried strawberry sugar. #briochedoughnut #strawberrydoughnut #roastedstrawberry

Mini Pastry Cream Filled Brioche Doughnuts


 
Perfectly fluffy mini brioche doughnuts are fried to perfection, rolled in sugar, and filled with flavoured pastry cream. A whole tray of mini doughnuts would be perfect for a special occasion or gathering, as they are a hit with all ages! #doughnut #briochedoughnut
Perfectly fluffy mini brioche doughnuts are fried to perfection, rolled in sugar, and filled with flavoured pastry cream. A whole tray of mini doughnuts would be perfect for a special occasion or gathering, as they are a hit with all ages! #doughnut #briochedoughnut
Perfectly fluffy mini brioche doughnuts are fried to perfection, rolled in sugar, and filled with flavoured pastry cream. A whole tray of mini doughnuts would be perfect for a special occasion or gathering, as they are a hit with all ages! #doughnut #briochedoughnut
Perfectly fluffy mini brioche doughnuts are fried to perfection, rolled in sugar, and filled with flavoured pastry cream. A whole tray of mini doughnuts would be perfect for a special occasion or gathering, as they are a hit with all ages! #doughnut #briochedoughnut
Perfectly fluffy mini brioche doughnuts are fried to perfection, rolled in sugar, and filled with flavoured pastry cream. A whole tray of mini doughnuts would be perfect for a special occasion or gathering, as they are a hit with all ages! #doughnut #briochedoughnut
Perfectly fluffy mini brioche doughnuts are fried to perfection, rolled in sugar, and filled with flavoured pastry cream. A whole tray of mini doughnuts would be perfect for a special occasion or gathering, as they are a hit with all ages! #doughnut #briochedoughnut
Perfectly fluffy mini brioche doughnuts are fried to perfection, rolled in sugar, and filled with flavoured pastry cream. A whole tray of mini doughnuts would be perfect for a special occasion or gathering, as they are a hit with all ages! #doughnut #briochedoughnut
Perfectly fluffy mini brioche doughnuts are fried to perfection, rolled in sugar, and filled with flavoured pastry cream. A whole tray of mini doughnuts would be perfect for a special occasion or gathering, as they are a hit with all ages! #doughnut #briochedoughnut
Perfectly fluffy mini brioche doughnuts are fried to perfection, rolled in sugar, and filled with flavoured pastry cream. A whole tray of mini doughnuts would be perfect for a special occasion or gathering, as they are a hit with all ages! #doughnut #briochedoughnut

Hi hi and happy Saturday! I am just popping in here to share this wee recipe with you! I got a deep fryer maybe a few months ago and went on a quest to fry literally everything in sight. It’s great for making all kinds of things, but especially great for mini doughnuts. I made these brioche cinnamon ones a while back and they seemed to be a huge hit, so I figured it was time to try my hand at mini filled doughnuts!

I took my go to brioche dough, and turned it into these super cute wee doughnuts, which I rolled in a bunch of different flavoured sugars. I filled these guys with a vanilla bean pastry cream, which I made a big batch of and split into four, and flavoured it with something a wee bit new and exciting - Heilala Vanilla’s new infused Vanilla extracts! If you’ve been round here for a while you know what a massive massive fan I am of Heilala and their products - not only is it the most amazing vanilla in which they control production from growth to product, but it is run by the most amazing people who are making such a huge effort to give back to the kingdom of Tonga where their first vanilla orchids were planted. Heilala started a kickstarter to fund their new line of extracts a few weeks back, and there is just one week to go, so if you can, pop on over and pledge - you are going to want to get your hands on some of this amazing extract, as it is a total game changer. I’m so excited to play around with it a little more!

For these dougnuts, I divided the filling once it was made, and stirred through some of Heilala’s infused extracts. I ended up going with four flavours - the cocoa extract, the coffee extract, the oak aged vanilla extract, and the pumpkin spice extract. I also made up some flavoured sugars to correspond with the filling flavour. I had a little of the oak aged vanilla extract left over so also had a little play with making a strawberry sugar using some freeze dried strawberry powder, and it was so, so so good with the vanilla filling! I finished each off with a tiny garnish - a sprinkle of the flavour of the sugar, just to help tell which was which. The flavoured pastry cream was so unique and delicious, I honestly don’t think that I can decide which one was my favourite. The infused extracts are such an easy way to add a huge depth of flavour to whatever you are making.

These doughnuts would be so perfect for something like a children’s party or event - because they are mini it gives everyone the opportunity to try all of the different flavours. They would also make amazing larger doughnuts - to do this I would follow these shaping and frying instructions.

A few wee tips:

  • Chilled dough is easiest to work with and cut out, so I recommend giving these an overnight rise in the fridge if you can. Alternatively you could roll it out, place it on a sheet pan (you may need to divide it in two), cover with plastic wrap, and pop in the freezer for 15-20 minutes to help firm up

  • I like to make both the brioche dough and the pastry cream the night before to give them time to cool.

  • I divided up the pastry cream after making it and then flavoured it individually. You can definitely only do one type if you want - I would go with the oak aged vanilla, as it pairs perfectly with literally anything.

  • I also made a whole bunch of different flavoured sugars to roll the doughnuts in! You can make these any flavour that you like - basically you just add flavour powder in whatever form (coffee, spices, freeze dried fruit powder etc) to sugar and then use that to roll the doughnuts in.

 

 

Mini Pastry Cream Filled Brioche Doughnuts

- Makes about 45 doughnuts -

Pastry cream adapted from Bouchon bakery

Doughnut dough
1 envelope (2 1/4 tsp) active dry yeast
250g (1 cup) whole milk, lukewarm
4 Tbsp (50g) sugar
565g (3 3/4 cups) all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp Heilala vanilla bean paste
90g (6 tbsp) unsalted butter, at room temperature

Neutral oil for frying

Vanilla Pastry Cream
132g egg yolks (about 8 yolks)
110g sugar
37g corn starch
1 tsp Heilala vanilla bean paste
550g whole milk
27g unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 tsp Heilala Vanilla Pumpkin Spice Vanilla Extract
3/4 tsp Heilala Vanilla Oak Aged Vanilla Extract
3/4 tsp Heilala Vanilla Coffee Vanilla Extract
3/4 tsp Heilala Vanilla Cocoa Vanilla Extract

To Finish
500g Sugar, divided into 100g portions
For Vanilla Sugar: add 1/2 tsp vanilla bean powder to 100g sugar
For Coffee Sugar: add 1/2 tsp espresso powder to 100g sugar
For Strawberry Sugar: add 1/2 tsp Freeze Dried strawberry powder to 100g sugar
For Pumpkin Spice Sugar: add 1/2 tsp pumpkin spice to 100g sugar
For Cocoa sugar: add 1/2 tsp cocoa to 100g sugar

 

- PROCESS -

DOUGHNUTS

In a small bowl, combine the yeast, milk and 2 Tbsp of the sugar. Mix well, and leave to sit for 10-15 minutes, or until foamy.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the flour, salt, and remaining 2 Tbsp sugar. Mix briefly to combine. Add the eggs, vanilla, and foamy yeast mixture to the bowl. Mix on low for 2-3 minutes, until the dough is starting to come together. It may look slightly dry but do not worry - it will mix together nicely in the next steps. Increase the mixer speed to medium, and mix for another 10 minutes, until the dough is soft and smooth.

Reduce the mixer speed to low, and add the butter a little at a time, waiting until it is fully incorporated into the dough before adding the next piece. This process should take 3-4 minutes. Once the butter is fully incorporated, increase the mixer speed to medium, and mix for a further 5 minutes, until the dough is very soft and smooth.

Transfer to an oiled bowl, and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Place overnight in the fridge to rise (see notes).

 

PASTRY CREAM

In a large bowl, whisk together the yolks, sugar and cornflour in a bowl. 

In a medium pot, warm the milk and vanilla paste until there is movement just around the edges of the milk - do not bring it to the boil. 

Remove the milk from the heat, and, whisking constantly, add half of the milk mixture into the egg and cornflour mixture to temper the egg yolks. Whisk briskly for 30 seconds. Transfer the milk-yolk mixture back to the pot, and return to a medium heat. Whisk constantly until very thick. 

Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter, mixing well until totally combined. Allow to stand for 5-10 minutes, whisking occasionally. 

Weigh the pastry cream and divide into four if flavouring. Add 3/4 tsp each flavour of Heilala infused vanilla extract to each portion of pastry cream. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly against the surface of each portion of pastry cream and place in the fridge to cool completely.


FRYING AND ASSEMBLY

Line two sheet pans with parchment paper. Turn the dough out onto a well floured surface. Roll until it is 1/2” thickness.

Using a 1 3/4” round cutter, cut out circles of dough. Repeat until you have cut out all of the dough - scraps can be pressed together and re-rolled. I like to use the scrap ones for the first test fry, as they sometimes turn out a little wonky.

Lightly cover the cut-out doughnuts with plastic wrap, and leave to rise for 45-50 minutes, until puffy. When you poke them lightly with your finger, it should leave a small indentation that springs back.

In the last 15-20 minutes of the doughnuts proofing, heat neutral oil to 350°f / 180°c in a large heavy-bottomed pot (cast iron works great). Place a wire rack over a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Mix up the flavoured sugars, if using.

Once the oil has come to temperature, test it with a few scraps of dough, or your doughnuts you cut from the re-rolled dough. Gently lower the doughnuts, up to six at a time (depending on the size of your pot), into the hot oil. Cook , flipping every 30 seconds, for 3-4 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from the oil using a slotted spoon and place on a cooling rack. Allow to cool for 30 seconds before tossing in the sugar. Repeat the process with the rest of the doughnuts.

Allow the doughnuts to cool completely, then, using a chopstick or paring knife, cut a hole in each doughnut. Transfer the pastry cream to piping bags either with the end snipped off or fitted with a round piping tip.

Fill each doughnut with pastry cream (correspond the pastry cream flavour to the tossed sugar flavour if you are using different flavours of pastry cream), piping a small blob on the top of each. Sprinkle with a corresponding garnish (I used valrhona crispy pearls, pumpkin spice, espresso powder, a little piece of vanilla bean, and a sprinkle of freeze-dried strawberry powder on the strawberry vanilla ones.

Best eaten on the day that they are made.

Perfectly fluffy mini brioche doughnuts are fried to perfection, rolled in sugar, and filled with flavoured pastry cream. A whole tray of mini doughnuts would be perfect for a special occasion or gathering, as they are a hit with all ages! #doughnut #briochedoughnut

Thank you so much to Heilala Vanilla for sponsoring this post! All opinions are my own.