How to Make Eclairs: Recipes for Chocolate, Coffee, Mocha, Raspberry and Strawberry Eclairs

Eclairs are finger-shaped buns made by piping lengths of choux pastry onto greased baking trays and baking them until crisp. The cooked pastry shells are then split open and filled with either freshly whipped cream or mocha flavored whipped cream, perhaps some sliced fresh fruit, and topped with a flavored glacé icing.

Set out below are the recipes and instructions for filling and icing Chocolate Eclairs, together with some delicious variations for making Coffee, Mocha, Raspberry and Strawberry Eclairs, using pre-prepared and cooked choux pastry shells. The instructions for making, piping and storing the required choux pastry shells are set out in a previous hub, How to Make Choux Pastry.

To Make Chocolate Eclairs

You will need:

Glossy Chocolate Icing:

  • 2 tablespoons cocoa
  • 1½ tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1 cup icing (confectioner's) sugar, sifted
  • Few drops vanilla essence

Step 1

Method

1. When the pastry shells have cooled, whip the cream with the sugar and fill the eclairs, using a piping bag and nozzle as before.

2. Stir the cocoa, sugar and water over a low heat until the sugar is dissolved, then bring to the boil without stirring.

3. Remove from the heat and stir in the icing (confectioner's) sugar and vanilla, adding a little boiling water if necessary to make a coating consistency.

Step 4

4. Spread the tops of the eclairs with icing, using a knife dipped in hot water, or dip eclairs, top down, in the icing.

5. Leave to set.

Variations

Coffee Eclairs: Make as for Chocolate Eclairs, but ice with Coffee Glace Icing (recipe below).

Mocha Eclairs: Make as for Chocolate Eclairs, but fill with Mocha Cream (recipe below) and ice with Coffee Glace Icing, drizzled with melted chocolate.

Raspberry or Strawberry Eclairs: Make as for Chocolate Eclairs, but fill with whole raspberries or sliced strawberries and cream and ice with Lemon Glace Icing (recipe below), tinted pink.

Coffee and Raspberry Eclairs.
Coffee and Raspberry Eclairs.

Glace Icings

For the Basic Glace Icing:

You will need:

  • ¾ cup icing (confectioner's) sugar, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon boiling water
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla essence

Method:

Mix the icing sugar, water and vanilla in a bowl. Stir over boiling water until smooth, then quickly spread over the tops of the eclairs, using a knife dipped in hot water, or dip eclairs, top down, in the icing. Leave to set.

Coffee Glace Icing: Sift 1½ teaspoons instant coffee powder with the icing sugar.

Lemon Glace Icing: Use strained lemon juice instead of water to mix, and add a few drops of red food coloring if desired.

Mocha Cream

You will need:

  • 5 tablespoons creamy milk
  • 1½ level tablespoons finely ground mocha or filter coffee
  • 3 ounces (90 g) plain cooking chocolate
  • 2/3 cup cream

Mocha Eclairs.
Mocha Eclairs.

Method

1. Measure the milk into a small pan, sprinkle the coffee on top and slowly bring almost to the boil, stirring all the time.

2. Remove from the heat and leave to infuse for 5 minutes. Pour through a very fine strainer, then allow to cool.

3. Break the chocolate into pieces and melt in a bowl over hot water.

4. Whip the cream until thick, lightly mix in first the coffee milk and then about two-thirds of the chocolate.

5. Fill eclairs (as above).

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