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These light-as-air doughnuts taste just like chocolate eclairs and the best part? They’re made using pantry staples!

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These chocolate eclair doughnuts are actually called ‘crullers’ and are made using choux pastry which is deep-fried until crispy, puffed and golden. If (like me) you’ve been baking up more of a storm than usual during the COVID-19 lockdown, then you’re probably looking for something a little different to try but are still limited to what’s in your pantry (check out my 30 recipes you can make using pantry staples). These are also great if you don’t have an oven but still want to join the rest of the world in their baking spree!

Are you ready to make some doughnuts? Join me TODAY 31 March 2020 at 1pm as I take over Le Creuset’s Instagram stories and make these step-by-step. 

For the chocolate eclair doughnuts, you’ll need:

80g salted butter (or margarine), cut into small blocks
1 cup (250ml) water
110g cake flour (you can also use bread flour), sifted
3-4 large eggs, lightly beaten
Oil, for frying

Melt the butter in a heavy-based pot (I used my Le Creuset signature casserole) then add the water. Cover with the lid and bring to a rolling boil.

TIP: It’s important to bring the water to a boil with the lid on. We don’t want any water to evaporate as it will affect the ratios of the recipe. Remember, choux pastry rises from steam alone so we need to keep as much water in there as possible.

Immediately add all the flour at once. Mix until a smooth dough forms, cook for about 2-3 minutes or until the pastry pulls away from the sides of the pot and forms a ball. Transfer to a large Le Creuset mixing bowl and allow to cool until lukewarm.

Beat the eggs into the pastry a little at a time until smooth, shiny and of a piping consistency. The mixture is ready when it forms a ‘v’ shape when a spatula is lifted out of the pastry.  Place the pastry in a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle.

(Note: if you don’t have a piping bag or a nozzle, you can simple use a ziplock bag with one of the corners cut off)

Cut about 14 or 15 squares of baking paper approximately 8cm x 8cm. Using a cookie cutter or other circular tool, draw a circle 6cm wide on a piece of paper. This will be your template.

Using your traced circle as a guide, pipe circles onto the baking paper squares, ending each with a little flick of your wrist. Place on a baking sheet. Transfer to the freezer and freeze for an hour.
(Note: Freezing is optional but it does help the doughnuts keep their sharp ridges while frying.)

About 20 minutes before the hour is up, fill a Le Creuset cast-iron casserole with about 10cm of oil. Heat over medium until it registers 190˚C on a thermometer.

Working in batches, frying two to three doughnuts at a time, placing them piped side down first.
Allow them to fry for 3-4 minutes on the one side until completely puffed up. Leave the baking paper squares on as long as possible – this causes steam which allows them to puff up more!
Flip the doughnuts then fry for another 3-4 minutes until golden brown. Remove from the oil and drain on paper towel. Allow to cool completely.

For the glaze, you’ll need:
165g icing sugar
35g cocoa powder
20g honey (or golden syrup)
35ml hot water

To make the glaze, sift the icing sugar and cocoa powder together. Mix the honey and hot water together then add to the icing sugar mixture to form a thick paste.

TIP: If you don’t have cocoa powder in your pantry, then you can make any flavour glaze you like – simply add 35g extra icing sugar and replace the water with lemon/orange juice, or add a drop of vanilla.

Dunk the eclair doughnuts in the chocolate glaze, allow the additional glaze to drip off, and then place on the wire rack. Repeat with the remaining doughnuts then eat them all at once because they’re best served on the day they’re made!

CHOCOLATE ECLAIR DOUGHNUTS
Yields 14
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Ingredients
  1. 80g salted butter or margarine, cut into small blocks
  2. 1 cup (250ml) water
  3. 110g cake flour or bread flour, sifted
  4. 3-4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  5. Oil, for frying
  6. GLAZE
  7. 165g icing sugar
  8. 35g cocoa powder
  9. 20g honey (or golden syrup)
  10. 35ml hot water
Instructions
  1. Melt the butter in a heavy-based pot (I used my Le Creuset casserole) then add the water. Cover with the lid and bring to a rolling boil.
  2. Immediately add all the flour at once. Mix until a smooth dough forms, cook for about 2-3 minutes or until the pastry pulls away from the sides of the pot and forms a ball. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and allow to cool until lukewarm.
  3. Beat the eggs into the pastry a little at a time until smooth, shiny and of a piping consistency. The mixture is ready when it forms a ‘v’ shape when a spatula is lifted out of the pastry.
  4. Place the pastry in a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle.
  5. (Note: if you don’t have a piping bag or a nozzle, you can simple use a ziplock bag with one of the corners cut off)
  6. Cut about 14 or 15 squares of baking paper approximately 8cm x 8cm.
  7. Using a cookie cutter or other circular tool, draw a circle 6cm wide on a piece of paper. This will be your template.
  8. Using your traced circle as a guide, pipe circles onto the baking paper squares, ending each with a little flick of your wrist. Place on a baking sheet. Transfer to the freezer and freeze for an hour.
  9. (Note: Freezing is optional but it does help the doughnuts keep their sharp ridges while frying.)
  10. About 20 minutes before the hour is up, fill a heavy-bottomed saucepan with about 10cm of oil.
  11. Heat over medium until it registers 190˚C on a thermometer.
  12. Working in batches, frying two to three doughnuts at a time, placing them piped side down first.
  13. Allow them to fry for 3-4 minutes on the one side until completely puffed up. Leave the baking paper squares on as long as possible - this causes steam which allows them to puff up more!
  14. Flip the doughnuts then fry for another 3-4 minutes until golden brown.
  15. Remove from the oil and drain on paper towel. Allow to cool completely.
  16. To make the glaze, sift the icing sugar and cocoa powder together.
  17. Mix the honey and hot water together then add to the icing sugar mixture to form a thick paste.
  18. Dunk the doughnuts in the glaze, allow additional glaze to drip off, and then place on the wire rack.
  19. Repeat with the remaining doughnuts.
Notes
  1. TIP The doughnuts should be served on the day they’re made.
The Kate Tin https://thekatetin.com/