Strawberry State Fair Cream Puffs
We are in the midst of our summer here in Wisconsin and our clan, like most of your families, is knee-deep in the season rituals for which we wait months and months to partake – summer camp, baseball, gardening, and if we are lucky, maybe a short road trip or brief vacation with those we love most.
This morning, two very exhausted and sun-kissed cub scouts returned to our home after a few days of camping in the wild. We welcomed them home with some of these beauties and then later in the evening convened for a viewing of The Phantom of the Opera. In between it all there was some golf, an excellent family brunch, and a brief hello to a wonderful friend of ours.
These cream puffs were a great compliment to the day – but in all fairness, I can’t think of any type of day to which they would not add virtue. I’m not sure if it was having Joe and Isaiah back home, the leisurely and pressure-free Saturday, or these cream puffs that made it a wonderful Saturday. I suppose that any of these conditions by themselves would give reason to be happy. To have all three and countless others that transpired throughout the day, well, that’s just livin’ the dream.
- 1 cup water
- ½ cup butter
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 4 eggs
- 1 tablespoon milk
- 1 egg yolk, beaten
- 2 cups heavy cream
- ¾ cup confectioners' sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 quart fresh strawberries
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Over medium heat, bring water, butter, and salt to boil, in a large sauce pan. Add flour all at once and stir into a smooth ball. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, and beat after each egg. Continue to beat until smooth and shiny. Prepare cookie sheet with a non-stick coating. Drop mixture by ¼ measurements onto cookie sheet. Combine milk and egg yolk and brush over each puff. Place in oven for 35 to 40 minutes or until golden brown.
- Upon removal of oven, cut slit in each puff to allow steam to escape and place on wire rack to cool.
- Finely chop a handful of strawberries in small bowl. In separate large bowl, beat cream until it begins to thicken. Add sugar, vanilla and chopped strawberries and beat until almost stiff. Split puffs, discard soft centers, and fill with cream. Garnish with strawberries and dust with additional confectioners' sugar. This recipe makes about 10 cream puffs.