Chocolate Eclair help

Chocolate Eclair help

Submitted by SimoninShanghai on December 1, 2015 – 9:17am.

Hi everyone,

I had a lot of help with my croissant-rolling issues in this forum the other week, and genuinely have progressed a lot based on the advice received, so I am very grateful.

Now I have come across a new problem while making eclairs, and it’s seems only sensible to try the same tactic, and ask you, great bakers, for help.

The problem is that for some reason I can’t achieve the completely dry, completely hollow choux casing that really makes an eclair. Currently the finger are all either drooping, or have dough networks forming inside the case, meaning the choux is not hollow, and starts to go moist very quickly.

First, let me say that I do not open the over door while baking, as this would be the most obvious cause for a droopy pastry. And for me, adds to the mistry of why mine just don’t seem to make the grade.

Let me lay out my process, so that you can hopefully pick up where there is an issue, or where More care needs to be given: 

I am currently using the following quantities of ingredients: 125g plain flour, 250ml water, 3g salt, 13g sugar, 4 eggs + extra for wash.

I first boil the water, butter, salt and sugar until incorporated. Then take mixture off hob and stir in the flour, slowly and first then more vigorously. I return mixture to heat and cook for roughly 30 seconds constantly stirring (I have read that this dries out the mixture but I have no proof of this in my own efforts). I stop when the mixture no longer sticks to the edges of the pan.

I transfer the mixture to a clean bowl and mix in the eggs with a spatula. I try to reach a consistency where the mixture runs off the end of the spatula, but then hangs down without fully dropping.

I place this into a piping bag. Leave for a minute or two to cool ever so slightly. Then pipe in eclair rows. I apply egg wash. Bake at roughly 200 c for 15 minutes, then lower temp to 160 c for another 15 – 20 minutes, in an attempt to dry out the pastry. The door is NEVER opened during the bake.

This process seems to be fairly standard, however every time in get this moist middle and droopy top. Taste is fine, and can work as an eclair, but in the pursuit of true baking ability, I would like to be able to do this lovely pastry justice.

I look forward to any help or suggestions people can provide.

Best regards,

Simon