To look at these little beauties, you wouldn’t think that you could whip up a batch in just over half an hour. Chouquettes (pronounced shoo-kets) are French pastry sugar puffs and can also be made into profiteroles (French cream puffs) if you’re feeling fancy.
It’s that magic pâte à choux dough recipe again, the very same one used to make savory gougères, like these with Gruyère and black pepper. But instead of cheese and pepper, you’ll add a little sugar to the dough and a generous sprinkle of pearl sugar to the top.
Making the dough is simple, you’ll bring most of the recipe ingredients to a boil then add the flour all at once and stir like crazy until it’s smooth and pulls away from the sides of the pan. After the dough cools for a few minutes, you’ll whisk in the eggs one by one (As I mentioned in my gougère recipe, I have been known to impatiently add all of the eggs at once, which works, but assures a moment or two of panic. This time I behaved myself.)
I take a rustic approach to forming these, scooping them out in heaps with a spoon, but you can certainly pipe them onto the baking sheet if you want more uniform puffs.
Chouquettes bake into lightly brown little pastries that are crisp on the outside, creamy and tender on the inside with a sweet crackle in every bite from the pearl sugar. They’re wonderful snacks or party fare and perfect for an edible gift, wrap them up in a little paper sack as they do in Paris boulangeries.
Note: The swoon-worthy copper basket in the first photo was a gift from my sweet, Francophile friend, Beeta. If you haven’t checked out her blog, Mon Petit Four, you must!
Simple to make and absolutely delicious, chouquettes are lightly sweet pastry puffs that make a wonderful snack and perfect party fare.
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- pinch fine salt
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup all-purpose flour 135 grams
- 1/4 cup pearl sugar
Preheat oven to 375ºF.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Heat water, milk, sugar, salt and butter in a saucepan until boiling. Add flour all at once, stirring vigorously, until dough is smooth and pulls away from the sides of the pan. Remove from heat.
Let dough cool for 3 minutes then whisk in eggs, one at a time, until shiny and smooth.
Scoop a heaping teaspoon of dough (walnut-size) out and, with a second spoon scrape onto prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough, spacing the dough mounds evenly apart, giving them a little room to spread. (Or pipe dough onto baking sheet with a 1/2-inch round tip.)
Sprinkle dough mounds generously with pearl sugar. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until puffed and golden brown. Enjoy warm or at room temperature.
These freeze beautifully. To reheat: preheat oven to 350ºF then turn oven off. Arrange frozen chouquettes on a baking sheet and, after you turn oven off, place in oven for 3 to 5 minutes or until warm. Serve.