Requires: X2 Piping bags, Wilton 6B piping tip and 1M piping tip or of your choosing
Preheat the oven to 210°C conventional oven (410° F/Gas 6-7). Line two baking trays with two silicone baking mats (alternatively, baking trays lined with non-stick baking paper). Adjust metal racks to the middle groove of the oven.
To make the Choux pastry, place the butter, 250ml water, caster sugar and a pinch of salt in a medium-sized saucepan. Bring just to the boil, then remove from the heat. Use a wooden spoon to stir in the flour off the heat until just combined. Continuously stir over medium heat for 2-3 minutes or until the mixture is shiny and choux is fragrant. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 2 minutes.
Transfer to a stand mixer and beat with the paddle attachment on medium speed for 3 minutes to cool the mixture down. Alternatively, use a hand beater on medium speed. Add one egg and beat until combined. Continue to add the eggs, one at a time, beating until egg is combined. Once all the eggs have been added and the Choux pastry is well combined, beat for 2 more minutes.
Spoon the Choux pastry into a piping bag (use a Wilton 6B piping tip or of your choosing). Pipe small rounds the size of a walnut (3cm approx.) onto prepared baking trays. Pipe the rounds about 3cm apart and as evenly as possible. This recipe makes about 36 Profiteroles. Use wet hands to pat down the peaks.
Bake the Choux pastry. Bake one tray on the middle groove of the oven for 15 minutes. Refrigerate the remaining tray. Reduce the heat to 170°C conventional oven (338° F/Gas 3). Cook for a further 10 minutes. Turn off the oven and slide a wooden spoon in the oven door to keep the oven door slightly ajar. Leave the profiteroles to gently cool in the oven for 30 minutes to ensure the entire choux is dry, then remove from the oven.
Note: If you have a large oven that allows two baking trays to be baked side by side, bake both trays at once and skip steps 6 to 7.
Tip: A very important tip is to make sure that you do not open the door of the oven while the Choux pastry is cooking.
Reheat the oven to 210°C conventional oven (410° F/Gas 6-7).
Bake the second baking tray by repeating step 5, remembering to reduce the heat to 170°C conventional oven (338° F/Gas 3) after 15 minutes cooking.
Meanwhile to make the Chantilly cream, place the thickened cream in a bowl. In a stand mixer, beat with the whisk attachment until stiff peaks form. Alternatively use a hand beater on medium speed. Add the sifted icing sugar and vanilla bean seeds (or vanilla bean paste) and beat until combined. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Once the choux pastry has completely cooled, spoon the Chantilly cream into a clean piping bag with a Wilton 1M piping tip or of your choosing. Use a small piping tip (or tip of a small sharp knife) to pierce the base of each profiterole, then pipe Chantilly cream inside the Profiteroles.
To make the chocolate sauce, place the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring to just below boiling point. Place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water (don’t let bowl touch the water). Cook, stirring using a metal spoon, until the chocolate has melted to a smooth consistency. Remove from the heat and stir the hot cream into the melted chocolate until smooth.
To assemble the Chocolate Profiterole cake, dip 14 profiterole tops in the chocolate sauce and arrange (touching) in a circle on the serving platter to form the first tier. Drizzle extra chocolate sauce over the sides as required to ‘glue’ them together. Continue building the cake by dipping profiterole tops in the chocolate sauce before arranging on top of the lower layer, adding extra chocolate sauce, as required. The second tier will have approximately 10, followed by 7 on the third tier, 3 on the fourth tier and one profiterole on top.
Note: I made 36 Profiteroles which left 1 tester. The portion size is 3 balls per person with some lucky people that can have 1 extra.
Refrigerate and remove 30 minutes before serving. Buon appetito!