Indulge without guilt in these Low fat Chocolate Eclairs for two – the vanilla custard filling is made with 2% milk!
Have you had one of these? Like for real? I made these for the first time almost 5 years ago, and as delicious as it was, 40 éclairs is a lot to handle and harder to give away (on account of the deliciousness!). If you haven’t had an éclair, let me break it down for you very quickly. An éclair is a classic French pastry dessert made up of three components: 1. The hollow éclair shell made of paté choux (choux pastry) 2. The vanilla custard filling 3. Chocolate covered top. Each of these components are delicious by themselves, but put them all together, and you get the exceptionally glorious dessert that is the Chocolate Eclair.
Uggghhhh! This was sooo good! I almost regret not making more, but I think that’s for the best. The original recipe from Larrouse Gastronomique makes about 40 of these, and if I had made them all, I would have inevitably eaten them all and well, no good can come of that, can it??!!!
My version of this classic French pastry results in neither a large batch nor a sinfully decadent one. The custard that is usually made with eggs and cream, is made with 2% milk and custard powder. The cornstarch in the custard powder does the work of the eggs and cream, and the additional splash of vanilla adds to its slightly healthier decadence. And it makes just 4 éclairs, so it’s impossible for you to binge eat these. Yaay!
You know the custard is done when a line drawn through the back of a custard-coated spoon stays a line even when you tilt the spoon every which way. Refrigerate the custard till you need it, wrapped in cling film touching the custard to prevent an icky film from forming.
Once the custard is ready, and maybe on the day of serving, you make the choux pastry shells. Honestly, the name paté choux might seem a little intimidating (I always imagine a French Chef with an oily moustache everytime I hear the name), but making choux pastry is easier than it seems. When the shells come out of the oven, the insides would have expanded with steam, and this steam must be let out. Otherwise, the hot steam would condense and the shells would collapse in a watery heap. Yuck!
I made slits on the side (easier to fill, but difficult to eat). Instead, you can poke holes on either sides with a skewer and jiggle it a bit in there to let the steam escape. Cool on wire rack until ready to fill.
The chocolate coating is usually a ganache, but in an attempt to cut out the fat, I’ve made a simple coating of melted dark chocolate. So make the chocolate coating just before serving. If you refrigerate the chocolate coating, it will harden and ruin the silky bite of the éclair.
Ahhh! Now doesn’t that look indulgent without a drop of cream in it! Serve it to your beau/belle this Valentine’s day for the perfect ending to a perfect evening!
When you make these (which I really think you SHOULD!), be sure to SHARE YOUR PHOTOS with me through Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. I’d love to see what you cook from here and will share it with pride on my social media feeds.