Bake these bite-size profiteroles up to 8 hours in advance and fill with whipped cream just before serving
- 1 cup water
- 6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. granulated sugar
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 4 eggs, plus 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 cup heavy cream whipped with 1/4 cup granulated sugar to stiff peaks
- 3 Tbs. confectioners’ sugar
Preheat an oven to 425°F. Line 2 baking sheets with nonstick liners or parchment paper.
In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the water, butter, salt and granulated sugar and bring to a boil. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the butter melts, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the flour and mix vigorously until the dough pulls away from the sides of the pan, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat, make a well in the center, add 1 egg to the well and beat until combined. Repeat with 3 more eggs.
Dip a small spoon into cold water, scoop up a generous teaspoon of the dough and push it onto a prepared baking sheet. Repeat to form a total of 30 puffs. Brush the tops with the beaten egg.
Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350°F. Continue baking until the puffs are golden brown, about 15 minutes more. Turn off the oven, pierce the bottom of each puff with a bamboo skewer and leave in the oven for 10 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.
Cut the puffs in half horizontally to fill. Put a heaping spoonful of the whipped cream in the bottom of each pastry and replace the tops. Place on a platter, dust with the confectioners’ sugar and serve. Serves 12 to 14.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Cocktail Parties, by Georgeanne Brennan (Free Press, 2006).