Easy Cream Puffs: #102 of 1000 Sustainable Food Experiments

Also known as choux buns, French profiteroles, or Italian bignè, cream puffs are mouthfuls of fluffy goodness. My grandmother used to fill them with custard as a special treat. We filled these with freshly whipped cream and chocolate chips, then dusted with powdered sugar. 

This is part of our 1,000 Food Experiments to create sustainable meals for our family and hopefully yours.

Ingredients ($4 total)

6 tbsp butter, cut into chunks – $0.93
3/4 cup water – free
3/4 cup flour – $0.12
3 eggs – $0.87
1 cup whipping cream – $1.49
1/2 cup chocolate chips – $0.50
Powdered sugar for dusting – $0.11

Directions

1. Make the choux pastry: In a small pot, mix butter and water and bring to a boil. Stir until butter is melted. Reduce heat to medium, then add flour and mix continuously with a wooden spoon for about 30 seconds, until the mixture pulls away from side of pan and forms a ball. 

Turn off the heat, transfer the ball to a bowl and cool for 2 minutes. Then add the eggs one at a time, mixing vigorously after each addition.

Spoon the warm dough into a pastry bag with the tip cut off, and pipe 18 balls of dough about 1″ apart on a parchment-lined baking sheet.

With a wet finger, gently press the sticking-up top of each puff down a bit to round it out.

2. Bake at 425F for 15 minutes until puffed and golden brown, then turn off the oven and bake for 3 minutes more, then open the oven door and leave them in for 2 minutes more. 

This lets them gradually cool off and not sink into themselves. Finish cooling on a wire rack.

3. Whip the whipping cream with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Slice each cream puff in half and fill with chocolate chips, whipping cream, or whatever you like. Ham and avocado bites perhaps? 

Dust the top with powdered sugar if it’s a sweet cream puff, or top with salt or oregano if it’s savory. Enjoy!

Sustainability Score (explained here)

  • Time to make: 3 = <1 hour
  • Servings:  3 = lots of leftovers
  • Cost per person (prices based on Trader Joe’s/Costco): 3 = <$5
  • Deliciousness: 2 = decent meal
  • Environmental impact: 2 = moderate impact (cows)
  • Nutritional value: 1 = eat rarely
  • TOTAL: 14/18

If you tried it, please let me know how it came out for you. Wishing you and your family a healthy, happy day!

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