Thursday, December 26, 2013

Profiteroles ~ from Dough to Swans

The first time I made profiteroles my oldest niece, M, who is now in her early 30's, was about 4 years old.  They were at my house in NY for Christmas.  I asked her if she wanted to help make dessert and of course she did.  Her Mom just about fainted when she walked into the kitchen, because I had M on a stool at the stove helping me make the dough.  She looked as if she could've done a nose dive into the pot.  I didn't know at the time that maybe 4 year old's shouldn't be at the stove, or maybe I learned they could be because my own son has helped in the kitchen since he was 2.  But that year and every year there after, my profiteroles have turned out great!!

Since that time, I have made profiteroles about 1/2 dozen times, but this year, I fashioned the profiteroles into swans.  This is probably elementary and something many of us have eaten, but not being a pastry chef or a chef of any sort, I had to think about how this is actually done.

On Christmas Eve, I made the profiteroles and the Chocolate Sauce (sorry, this is a near and dear recipe that I don't share, so no to the Chocolate Sauce request).  I even mocked up a swan (pictured top left) so I wasn't truly winging it, no pun intended, during Christmas dessert.

On Christmas, with the help of my son C, 11, and his cousin A, 13, (I like to include kids in the process), I prepared an order form in advance and A simply asked each diner if they wanted 1 or 2 profiteroles and she just had to circle the number.  She asked what flavors and placed checks in the boxes.  The options were Peppermint Stick, Chocolate, and Vanilla.  Then she asked if they cared for Chocolate Sauce and circled Y or N.  11 for 11 on the Chocolate Sauce!

I needed the dinner plates washed in order to reuse them.  Like I always say the difference between a dessert on a dinner plate or a salad plate is $5!  That was in the works, while A tracked down the orders.  I laid out the plates so they were ready.  Then once the order sheet came in, I cut the tops off of the profiteroles and cut the tops in half.  I also laid out the number of necks I needed for each plate.

I placed a pool of chocolate sauce on the plate, scooped the ice cream flavors, assembled the swans and dusted them with powdered sugar.  C served each person once each plate was done.  Everyone loved them.  I served the 3 of us last and I can tell you a custom ala minute dessert was a hit with everyone!

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