Choux Au Craquelin: Matcha Cream Puff from Bansho

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French and Japanese-style bistro, Bansho, shares chef Tomotaka Ishizuka's Japanese twist on the classic French Choux au Craquelin.

23 November 2023

Serves 5: Begin some of the recipe one day prior to serving

Ingredients

Choux Pastry

32ml Milk

32ml Water

32g Butter

1.2g Sugar

0.6g Salt

34g Plain Flour

56g Eggs

Craquelin

36g Plain Flour

36g Brown Sugar

28g Soft Butter

Matcha Cream:

120g Cream

36g Sugar

0.6g Gelatine

1.5g Matcha Powder

Method

Choux Mix

Preheat the oven to 200C.

Combine milk, water, butter, sugar, and salt in a pot and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to low and stir in flour, cooking for 2-3 minutes until the raw flour taste disappears.

Transfer the mixture to a mixer (or mix by hand) on low-medium speed to cool.

When the mixture cools to 20-30°C, add eggs one at a time, ensuring each is fully incorporated before adding the next.

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and moisten with water. This humidifies the environment, allowing the pastries to rise without drying or burning.

Transfer the choux dough to a piping bag and form 3-4cm rounds.

Place trays in the oven, reduce the temperature to 170C, and bake for 20 minutes, allowing the choux to rise.

Open the oven briefly to release moisture, then continue baking for another 10 minutes until choux is crispy.

Choux Tips

Ensure the liquid is boiling before adding flour, but avoid reducing it too much.

The mix is ready when a thin crust forms at the pot’s bottom and it doesn’t stick to your utensil.

Don’t add eggs when the mix is too hot, or they’ll cook, preventing a proper rise.

Depending on humidity, you might need more or fewer eggs. The mix is right when it falls in a consistent ribbon and holds its shape.

If the mixture falls in clumps, add more eggs one at a time, ensuring it doesn’t become overly wet.

Over adding eggs results in a too-wet mix, causing the choux to collapse during baking and preventing a crisp crust.

Craquelin Mix: 1 Day in Advance

Using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat brown sugar and butter on medium until creamy (~2 mins).

Scrape the bowl and beater. Add flour and salt, mixing on medium-low until a damp, crumbly texture forms (~2 mins).

Form the dough into a ball using hands (avoid adding extra flour). Roll it out on parchment paper to 0.5cm thickness.

Freeze to set the craquelin.

After freezing, remove the top parchment layer and cut out 18 rounds using a 2-inch cutter.

Place on the choux mix and bake as per the choux procedure.

Craquelin Tips

Ensure butter is at room temperature.

Avoid overmixing to maintain a crispy crust.

Matcha Cream: Prepare 1 Day in Advance

In a pot, combine cream, sugar, and sifted matcha; bring to a boil.

Rehydrate the gelatine in water.

After boiling, remove the pot from heat. Squeeze out excess water from gelatine and whisk into the mix.

Strain the mixture to remove any lumps or impurities.

Allow it to cool and set in the fridge for 24hrs.

Once cooled and somewhat custard-like, whisk in a mixer with a whisk attachment on medium-high speed until it forms a stiff peak.

Fill a piping bag with the matcha cream and pipe into the choux.

Matcha Cream Tips

Boiling the cream with matcha and sugar enhances its distinctive green colour and flavour.

Gelatine ensures the cream doesn’t turn buttery and aids in stability.