Chocolate Pate A Choux Dough, for Chocolate Profiteroles with Pistachio Ice Cream and Chocolate Sauce
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
In a heavy bottomed 1-quart saucepan, combine the water, butter, sugar and salt. Bring to a rolling boil. Remove from the heat and add all of the flour and cocoa powder, at once, to the pan and quickly stir vigorously to incorporate the flour into the liquid.
Return the pan to the stove, and over a medium-low heat, continue to cook and stir the dough over the fire. Do this until the dough pulls away from the sides of the pan and forms a ball. Remove the dough from the saucepan, and place in an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix the dough on low speed until the dough is cooled down to about 140 degrees F, which is still quite warm to the touch, but cool enough to prevent the eggs from cooking if added to the dough.
Raise the speed of the mixer to medium, and add 1 of the eggs to the dough and mix until completely incorporated. Continue adding the remaining eggs, 1 at a time, waiting until each egg is incorporated before adding the next egg.
Immediately transfer the dough to a piping bag with a round tip.
Pipe small mounds of choux pastry onto the prepared baking sheet that are 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Do not pipe them too closely together as they will need space to expand as they bake. Place the sheet pan in the oven and bake the profiteroles for 12 minutes, or until golden brown. Reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees F, and continue to bake the profiteroles until they are dried out, about 22 minutes longer. Turn the oven off and remove the profiteroles from the oven. Using the tip of a paring knife, cut a small slit in the side of each puff, near the bottom. Place the profiteroles back on the baking sheet and place back in the oven, propping the oven door open so the choux can dry out as they cool, about 1 hour or until oven is cool.
Cut the cooled profiteroles horizontally, and place a scoop of the pistachio ice cream in between each half. Serve the profiteroles immediately, drizzled with chocolate sauce and garnished with confectioners' sugar, or freeze them to serve later.Pistachio Ice Cream:
1 cup pistachios, shelled
3 cups heavy cream
2 cups milk
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
12 large egg yolks
1 cup sugar
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Spread the pistachios on a baking sheet. Bake for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until the nuts are browned. Remove from the oven and cool. Place in a food processor and pulse until the nuts are coarsely chopped. Set aside and reserve.
Combine the cream and 1 cup of the milk in a large heavy saucepan. Scrape the vanilla seeds into the cream mixture and add the bean pods as well. Bring to a gentle bowl over medium heat.
Whisk the yolks and sugar in a medium bowl. In a slow, steady stream, whisk 1 cup of the hot cream mixture into the egg mixture. Gradually mix the egg mixture back into the saucepan. Stir constantly over medium-low heat until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon and reaches 170 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer, about 5 minutes. Strain the custard through a fine mesh sieve into a heatproof medium bowl.
Discard the vanilla pods and stir in the remaining 1 cup of milk, the amaretto and the reserved pistachios to the custard. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing the wrap against the surface of the custard to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 2 hours.
Yield: 1 1/2 quartsChocolate Sauce:
3/4 cup half-and-half
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 pound semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Combine the half-and-half and butter in a small heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Heat the mixture until a thin paper like skin appears on the top. Do not boil. Add the chocolate and vanilla and stir until the chocolate melts and the mixture is smooth. Remove from the heat and let cool. The sauce can be kept refrigerated for several days, but must be brought to room temperature before serving. Serve drizzled over the profiteroles.
Yield: 1 1/2 cups