For the croquembouche we had to make enough profiteroles/cream puffs to cover a cone. The recipe we used for it was:
- 250 gr butter
- 500 gr water
- 250 gr flour
- 500 gr egg (or as much as needed to get the right dough consistency)
oven temperature 225C till they are done puffing up then lower it to 175C so the inside can "dry"
This recipe is enough for two "little" croquembouches. I started with cubing the butter and bring it to a boil with the water. Once the water boils and the butter has melted I took the pan of the stove and added all the flour and mixed it as well as I could. Then I put the pan back on the stove so I could "cook" the dough. Once there is a shiny layer on the dough, I put it in my stand mixer and mixed it with my flat beater till it cooled down enough for me to add the eggs one by one. Depending on how much water evaporates when the water cooks and the dough cools down, you might need more or less eggs. The last two times I made profiteroles I used about 8 eggs. The dough is ready when the mixture is slowly gliding off the flat beater.
Then I scooped the dough in a piping bag and piped some on baking paper. Then they went into the oven and when I thought they were done puffing up I lowered the temperature. After a while I took one out of the oven, broke it in two and inspected the inside to see if it was cooked enough. When they were ready I let them cool first before I punched a hole on the bottom. So while the profiteroles were cooling down I had time to whisk up some whipped cream with a bit of sugar and vanilla.
I also had time to make some sugar eggs. Sugar eggs are basically made with sugar and water.
For a colored egg one had to color the water before adding it to the sugar. When the sugar has the same consistency as wet sand I pressed it in a mold and left it to dry. Then for a hollow egg, I scooped some of the sugar out. Of course the plan was to make pretty decorations with royal icing, but unfortunately I didn't had enough time because my eggs weren't ready.
I also pressed some sugar in a chocolate mold. Since they were small they dried out pretty good so they kept their shape when I took them home.
So back to the croquembouche; I've got the profiteroles ready, punched a hole in the bottom and filled them with whipped cream. Then they went into the fridge to cool.
In the meantime I melted some dark chocolate and start tempering it. This chocolate will be used to clue the profiteroles together.
I also covered a cone loosely with some plastic wrap so when I'm done it is easier to get the cone and the plastic wrap out.
I dipped the cold profiteroles in the chocolate and stared to arrange them on the cone. I tried to fit them as well as possible, but since they all have different shapes, I had to fill in the gaps with profiterole parts. When the whole cone is covered the whole thing went into the freezer. Before we went home we slowly took the cone and as much plastic as we could out.
The croquembouche was placed on a pretty plate and then wrapped in clear foil to make it more festive. It was a hell of a job to break the croquembouche into bite size pieces so the next lesson I only made one croquembouche and a whole bunch of cream puffs.
Day 28 was a free style day. All that we did in the weeks before were repeated and everyone got to choose what they wanted to do.
Of course I went and made another croquembouche but since we had a hard time eating it I decided to make one and box the other cream puffs.
My family loved them and when they requested cream puffs I can now just whisk them up. No more failures here. When I made cream puffs at home I needed about 1,5 liter whipping cream for this recipe. If I mix it with some crème pâtissière then the ratio is 50% whipped cream and 50% crème pâtissière.