P&Q: Peppermint Cream Puff Ring

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51 thoughts on “P&Q: Peppermint Cream Puff Ring

  1. mine kind of collapsed and was very wet inside :( i read somewhere that you are supposed to cool it inside the oven with the door open, and i didn’t do that, so maybe that’s why? anyway, it still tasted pretty good. i doubt i will try again because the oven temp sets off my stupid smoke alarm.

  2. I made this last night. It wasn’t as hard as I thought. I used Dorie’s chocolate pastry cream rather than the peppermint theme for this ring. I made mini eclairs with the leftover dough.

    One suggestion is to put the top of the ring on the cream before pouring the chocolate glaze on. The top of the ring tended to be thinner thus more delicate and the chocolate glaze weighed it down creating crack and crumbling.

  3. If I am going to make this – and I am – it has to be tonight for a breakfast club in the morning. I will let you know if it can hold in the fridge past the 8 hours.

  4. My first time making choux was least week when I made little gougeres and they were prettu good. I made this choux ring last night – what a disaster! I am sure it will taste ok, but it completely collapsed and is really flat. I dont know what I did wrong. Maybe my oven wasnt hot enough to start with? I am going to try again over the weekend but any tips would be appreciated

  5. the whole time I was making it i felt like I was doing something wrong. But, when it was put all together it looked similar to the picture in the book ( I love it when there’s pictures!!)

    my cream was really minty and refreshing! I’m glad that I stuck with the mint.

  6. tammy…definitely pre-heat the oven for a good 20-30 mins. in her instructions for cooking the paste on the stove, she says to “cook the dough for another 1 to 2 minutes). this is an important step to help cook out and dry the paste. you don’t want to scorch it, but will probably want to go at least the full 2 minutes. also, i’ve always been taught to paddle the paste in the mixer for a couple minutes to cool it off a bit (still warm, but let some steam out) before adding the eggs one by one.

  7. Kelly D~ Yes! Please get back to us!

    Autumn~ I love it when there’s pictures too! I’m such a visual/hands on learner that pictures really help! :)

  8. I made it last night. Here are my observations:

    1. I let it cool slightly as well before adding the eggs. I didn’t want them scrambling in the paste.
    2. I had a LOT left over…enough for an entire sheet of cream puffs and then some.
    3. I thought the baking time was too long. I took it out early and was glad I did. They were a little past golden. The epicurious version said to turn off the oven and leave it in there for a few minutes. I tried that.
    4. My ring fell flat but the puffs stayed nice and high. No clue on that one.
    5. The recipe made plenty of dough and plenty of cream (enough for the ring, cream puffs and then some) but only enough glaze for the ring.
    6. It seemed to have survived just fine over night.

    This was my first time making pate a choux so keep that in mind.

  9. I’ve made cream puffs / eclairs / paris brest rings many, many times – and this was the first time the puffs fell, and they were soggy. I cooked them longer than the recipe stated and they are a mushy mess. I might remake them, or use my no-fail recipe.
    FYI – I’ve never put milk into pate a choux dough before. Has anyone else?

  10. I have muddled through the last several and made them lactose-free but I am a little stumped on substitutions for this one. In the past I have used soy yogurt in place of the heavy cream but I am not sure how this will work with the boiling of the cream…any thoughts/suggestions???


  11. The ring was a little flat but not soggy. I had plenty of dough to make eclairs and puffs and those came out great. The baking time was way to long- I think I took mine out at 25 minutes. Also, the top layer on the ring was too skinny- next time I would pipe a much fatter row on top. The cream was softer and lighter than what I have used in the past but it held up pretty well to piping and survived in the fridge overnight. I made my own glaze because I don’t like to use corn syrup.

  12. A tip I used was that scissors worked great for opening up the puffs. Less mauling than with a knife! My ring settled in on itself once out of the oven–even with the opening the oven door stuff, but the cream puffs (6) and eclairs (also 6) stayed nice and high and light.

  13. Haha! I just took a look at the chocolate and lemon cream…neither of them actually use whipping cream…hopefully soy milk will sub in well for the whole milk…we’ll see!

  14. This is what I’ve learned in making choux pastries in the past: The dough collapses when it hasn’t been in the oven long enough. It may look done, but let it bake the whole time or else it might fall.
    I usually don’t bake different sized pastries at the same time for this reason, smaller ones will be done first.
    If you take them out of the oven and it begins to collaspe, put the thing back in the oven as fast as you can, it still stands a good chance of repuffing and remaining repuffed.
    I’ve always beat the paste for a minute before adding the eggs, I don’t know if I’ll stray from the recipe and add the eggs immediately…We’ll see. My oven is preheating now.

  15. In regards to the last nonsequiter sentence: It was meant to read …I don’t know if I’ll stray from the recipe *or* add the eggs immediately.
    Proof reading is one’s friend.

  16. Well, I kind of feel better now about mine.I had the same problems. I just finished mine and it fell and was kind of …..eggy? in the middle. But the whipped cream filling, OMG! I used vanilla instead of the mint and it is out of this world! I ate a ton out of the bowl and so did my little girl. Im letting it chill right now, so I will let you know how it turns out.

  17. After reading these comments, I went to one of my favorite books, “Cookwise,” by Shirley Corriher, and looked up her tips on cream puff pastry. She has lots of hints — use a high-gluten flour for lighter puffs, be sure to add flour all at once, replace at least one egg with two egg whites for crisp, dry puffs, let dough cool a bit before adding eggs, you can use a food processor to beat in the eggs, make sure the oven is very hot when the puffs go in, then turn it down after they are done and let them dry for a while, and — falling is usually due to underbaking.

    I must buy my own copy of this book — I keep taking it out of the library over and over again, and each time I look at it I learn more.

  18. Made mine tonight and it turned out fine. Now, I made only half a recipe, but there was plenty even with that for the full-sized ring plus 4 puffs. Next time, I’d pipe really thick ropes for the ring because I think that’s part of the issue with the flatness. I also baked it at the recommended temperatures for the full time, and all of them were nice and brown and cooked through. There can be a small doughy portion in larger puffs (like the ring), and typically, you just scoop it out before putting in the filling.

    Oh, and I couldn’t live without my “Cookwise”!

  19. based on some of these comments about the rings collapsing, i decided to just make individual cream puffs with the minty filling. came out great!

    i did do the trick of putting a small slit in the sides of each baked puff, and further drying them out in the turned-off oven, cracked open with a wooden spoon for about 30 mins.

    i did half a recipe and piped out 24 good-sized puffs from it.

  20. The pate a choux came out great – I left it in the oven (turned off) for an additional 5 minutes. Not soggy at all. Marinated orange zest in the cream and it tastes yummy with the dark chocolate.

  21. I am going to make a past recipe instead…hope that’s okay! My boyfriend’s dad is a chocoholic, so I am making the Almost-Fudge Gateau for Father’s Day!

  22. I don’t have a 3/4″ diameter plain piping tip. Someone have an idea of what I can use instead? It’s 7pm on a Saturday night… the cake decorating stores don’t open until Monday and I sure don’t want to try baking this on Monday night.

    TIA :)

  23. Em, you can use a heavy duty (freezer) plastic bag. Just carefully cut out the corner until it is the desired size. Substitute that for your pastry bag. It won’t be perfect, but baking it will forgive any irregularities. Good luck!

  24. Jules… thanks but my question wasn’t about the bag… I have plenty of pastry bags. My question was about the tip. The recipe calls for a 3/4″ diameter plain piping tip… that’s a tip I don’t have. While I have a boatload of others, I don’t have that particular one and I was asking what I can use instead of that specific tip. Thanks though :)

    rainbowbrown… glad to know it can be done just with the pastry bag and no tip. That’s how I’m going to try it. Thanks!! :)

  25. My ring was a disaster! I guess I didn’t leave it in the oven long enough but it never ever puffed. The reason could be because I haven’t a clue when it comes to decorating tips. I also went to the store for a tip and could only find a #12 I probably used the wrong one. So I bagged the first batch and the second one I used my popover pan. They are looking good so far.

  26. Em, the others might be saying you don’t need a tip at all. I didn’t use a tip, just my bag without a tip. I made sure the hole was about 3/4″ wide.

    I wanted to say a big thanks to everyone for the various tips about baking the pastry. It was my first time and it turned out fine, although a bit misshapen, lol, but that’s my fault. I baked the ring 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.

    That’s why is so NICE baking along with others.

  27. Em, I also used my pastry bag without a tip and it was fine.

    Has anyone had problems with the cream?
    Mine looked (and tasted) great until I added the sour cream, then it became runny (even though I folded gently).
    I tried to whip it back up… didn’t work. I’m not sure what I did wrong…
    I think maybe I’ll just do a peppermint whipped cream without the sour cream addition.

  28. You guys, I dunno what my problem was… I just wasn’t getting it about the 3/4″ diameter tip. For SOME reason I was thinking that tip was the wide flat kind used for icing large cakes. When I read it to DH he (who knows absolutely NOTHING about this stuff) said ‘well if it says *diameter* then it must be round, right?”…. so yes you all were correct that I didn’t even need the tip. I just cut the pastry bag to the point where it was about a 3/4″ opening and away we went :)

    Carrie, I didn’t use the sour cream because once I tried that in the past and just like you said, it didn’t come together properly for me. I opted to omit it and yes siree that whipped cream filling was so dad-gum tasty I dunno how I stopped myself from eating ALL of it straight from the bowl. M’mmm M’m!

  29. Steph- (or anyone who can help!)

    I noticed you made all puffs. I want to do that too (getting a bit of a late start, though!) but I was wondering if you baked yours for the entire 35-40 minutes or if you had to decrease your baking time? I have never made cream puffs or worked with pate a choux so I’m a little nervous and this is all VERY new to me!

    I’m glad to get all the great tips you guys are giving, though – those will help a lot! Thanks!!!

  30. ok, I made this again in the weekend and this time I didnt open the oven door (i think that was my mistake last time) and I made sure I beat the batter for a while to make sure it was incorporated well and they turned out perfect!!

  31. I’m having a big problem with pastry cream (Dorie’s recipe) lately – I tried the chocolate one this time and have just cut in the butter and whisked it. It is very liquid – am not sure how it will set. I had the same thing happen with the vanilla pastry cream a week ago. Any ideas for solutions anyone?

  32. Amy– I did decrease the baking time… I did the full 15 minutes at 425, turned the oven to 375 for about 8-10 minutes more. Then I turned off the oven, stuck a pairing knife into the side of each one to make a small slit and propped the door with a wooden spoon and let them sit in the oven as it cooled for another 30 minutes. (that last step just helps them dry out inside a bit more.)

  33. Amy- I also made the puffs instead of the ring. I baked mine at 425 for 10 minutes then at 375 for 20 minutes. They came out perfect. But I must have made mine very large because I made half the recipe and got 7 puffs. Hope this helps!

  34. Heather – I made the chocolate pastry cream, too. I let it sit in the fridge over night w/ plastic wrap set right against the cream and an airtight lid on top of that… this morning, it was perfect. Hope this helps!! :)

  35. I made the chocolate pastry cream as well, and although I used Dorie’s ingredient amounts, my technique was totally different. I will describe it in my Tuesday post. It’s the only way I make pastry creams or creme anglaise now.

  36. Carrie, I also thought the sour cream thinned out the whipped cream. I could still pipe mine, but I was wishing it was thicker.

    I would probably leave out the sour cream if I did this again. I didn’t really like the tangyness it contributed. I thought since both the puff and the chocolate weren’t very sweet, the filling needed to be a little sweeter, rather than tangy.

  37. I made mine last night — a first, I baked early! As others have said, the puffs stayed puffy but the ring fell. I’ve made mini-éclairs many times before, and I always poke them a time or two with a skewer, to let the steam release after I take them out of the oven. I forgot to poke the ring, but I think it might be more to do with the piping on top of piping causing the collapses.

    The puffs or éclairs are just a single line of dough. But the ring was built up. I wonder if by using a larger diameter hole and piping circles side by side only and piping no dough on top, the collapsing problem could be avoided?

    Might try it if you have not made the recipe yet.

    This went over big last night. I did pop the cut ring back in to the oven at 225º to crisp it back up slightly. That helped.

  38. I just made my ring and a few more puffs. They are sad, sad sad…Flat and they feel spongy. I really don’t have time, patience or desire to do them over today. My cream is incredibly delicious, so I am thrilled about it and know it will make up for the sad puffs. Hope to do it better next time.

  39. I am making my cream puff now (I am such a procrastinator!) and my cream filling is very thin esp after adding the sour cream. I think its too thin to pipe! Poopy! Anyone else have that problem?

  40. I made individual puffs not the ring – they rose beautifully and were a nice pale golden – however, overnight they have become a bit soft. I wonder how to keep them crisp. Thaks for the pastry cream advice from Horned Froggy and Judy’s Gross Eats – will try the Dorie recipe again.

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