"Although many compare it to an éclair when considering its taste, one major difference is the circular shape. The pastry, which was created by patissier Louis Durand in 1910, pays homage to the Paris Brest bicycle race symbolizing the wheels. The pastry was crafted at the request of journalist and sports organizer Pierre Giffard. Its high caloric value was supposed to provide energy to racers prior to the long leg between Paname and Brest."(Read more)
How to pronounce Paris-Brest
makes 10 - 12
165 g Full Fat Milk
165 g Water
4 g Salt
5 g Sugar
135 g Butter
200 g Cake Flour, sifted
330 g Eggs, whisked
Flaked almonds, as needed
In a pot bring together: milk, water, butter, sugar and salt to a boil.
Once boiling, remove from heat and add the flour, stir vigorously until well combined using a wooden spoon or spatula.
Place the pot back on medium-high heat, stir and cook the dough for 2 minutes.
When ready, remove the dough from the heat.
Place the dough in a stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on a low speed until the dough has cooled.
Once cooled, turn up the speed of the mixer and add the whisked eggs in 5-6 stages. Mixing well and scraping down the mixing bowl between each addition.
The dough should be smooth and glossy, it should still be thick in consistency and drop slowly from the spoon.
Transfer the dough into a prepared piping bag.
Pipe the choux pastry dough, spaced well apart, into medium sized circles, with a diameter of 9cm. (or desired size) Piping around the circumference twice, the 2nd round going on top of the 1st to increase the height.
Scatter the choux pastry generously with flaked almonds.
Bake in a preheated oven at 200°C for 10 minutes then drop the temperature down to 180°C and bake until evenly browned, about 25-35 minutes.
HAZELNUT PRALINE FILLING FOR PARIS BREST
400 ml Milk
25 g Corn flour
100 g Castor Sugar
2 Egg Yolks
5 ml Vanilla Essence
Whisk together the egg yolks, corn flour and castor sugar together well. Heat the milk in a pot until boiling. Remove from the heat. Slowly pour the hot milk into the egg mixture, whilst whisking constantly. Once all combined, pour the mixture back into the pot and place on the heat. Bring to the boil, whilst whisking constantly, cook for 2 more minutes whilst boiling. Remove from the heat, whisk in the vanilla essence, pour the pastry cream through a sieve and into a container. Place a layer of cling wrap onto the surface and allow to set. Store in an airtight container, in the fridge for up to 1 week.
For the Buttercream
235 g Castor Sugar
10 g Glucose (optional)
½ cup Water
85 g Egg Whites
420 g Butter, room temperature
5 ml Vanilla Essence
Make an Italian meringue by placing the sugar and glucose with water together in a pot. Place the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Set aside. Bring the sugar mixture to the boil, allow to boil without stirring to 110°C. Begin to whisk the egg whites on high speed until the sugar syrup reaches a temperature of 116°C, once at temperature, pour the sugar syrup in a thin steady stream down the side of the mixing bowl into the egg whites to create a thick, fluffy meringue. Allow to whip on medium-high speed for at least 10 minutes.
In the meantime, cut the butter into blocks. Once the meringue has cooled down enough, that it is no longer hot to the touch, the bowl must feel warm, not hot, place all the butter and vanilla essence into the meringue and whip together until light and fluffy. About 5 minutes. Set aside.
This buttercream can keep for weeks stored in an airtight container in the fridge, it whips up best from room temperature.
Hazelnut Paste: (can be bought)
100 g Hazelnuts, roasted
100 g Castor Sugar
15 ml flavorless oil (such as grapeseed)
Place the nuts on foil or non-stick baking paper on a baking tray. Make a caramel by placing the sugar (without water) in a pot and keep stirring it gently over a medium-high heat until all the sugar as melted and has become a deep caramel colour. Pour the caramel over the nuts and allow to harden and cool completely. Once completely set, break into pieces and place into a food processor with the oil. Blend until completely smooth. Store in an airtight container.
To finish the Praline Filling
Place 150g of pastry cream, 500g buttercream (must be room temperature) and 100g hazelnut paste together in a mixing bowl, fitted with a whisk attachment. Whip together until light and fluffy. About 5-10 minutes. Place in a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle and set aside.
To assemble the Paris-Brest
Cut the paris-brest in half, lengthways. Pipe the praline filling in a circular motion around the base of the pastry. Keep in mind it should be visible once the lid of the Paris-Brest is placed on top. Drizzle the filling with more praline paste before placing the lid of the Paris Brest lightly on top. Dust the filled Paris-Brest generously with icing sugar.
Serve with a glass of 2016 La Motte Méthode Cap Classique!