Tuesday, June 17, 2008

TWD: Peppermint Cream Puff Ring

The thing about blogging is… sometimes I feel an immediate connection to someone. Maybe through a comment they’ve left, or a story they’ve told, a picture they’ve taken. Complete strangers, affecting me. I don’t know where on this big planet they reside, who their friends are, what they sound like, or what they do for a living. I wouldn’t know them if I passed them on the street. But yet, there’s this bit of emotion that goes out to them.

Someone who touched me (months ago) was Marion from "Il en faut peu pour etre heurex". Her picture of her cheesecake pops from the April Daring Bakers challenge just blew me away! Chocolate covered pops, with green chunks of pistachio against a purple background. I don’t know why, but the colors and composition seemed a thing of beauty and perfection to me.

I must have subconsciously stowed that picture away just beneath the surface because when it came time for this week’s Tuesday’s with Dorie recipe, I was inspired by it. (Thank you, Marion.) The recipe, chosen by Caroline of A Consuming Passion, was Peppermint Cream Puff Ring.

I knew peppermint wouldn’t fly with my husband. As I was tossing around in my head… what to do, what to do, Marion's picture came to mind and I knew...

pistachio flavored cream, chopped pistachios on top, purple background.

The verdict? Weeell, I think the recipe was probably best as written, lol. But I got some nice pictures, by darn!

Without the peppermint to balance it, the sour cream in the filling was overwhelming and made for a too-sour filling and somewhat bland confection overall. In fact, after taking pictures I scraped off the filling, stirred some peppermint oil into the leftover cream and scooped that onto the ring. Much better!

I read that some TWD-ers had fallen rings, so I heeded the advice of others and baked for the recommended time , plus I stirred and heated the milk-flour mixture for the full two minutes, plus paddled the flour-milk mixture in my Kitchenaid for maybe 30 seconds before adding the first egg. Thank you fellow bakers! I had no problems with the pastry (well, except that my piping job wasn't too pretty).

In addition to the ring, I got 18 bite-size cream puffs from the batter. (I hope they freeze well because that’s where they are at the moment.)

Dorie has graciously provided the recipe on epicurious.com HERE.

See you for next week's recipe: Mixed Berry Cobbler.

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