Paris-Brest with hazelnut praline cream


  • Serves 8 people

Paris-Brest is a classic for good reason - light-as-air choux pastry rings filled with hazelnut praline cream are hard to beat. Extra praline scattered inside adds a little unexpected crunch.

  • 200 ml milk
  • 2 egg yolks, plus 1 extra, for eggwash
  • 70 gm caster sugar
  • 35 gm (ΒΌ cup) cornflour
  • 150 ml thickened cream, whipped to soft peaks
  • To serve: coarsely chopped hazelnuts and icing sugar
  • Hazelnut praline
  • 170 gm caster sugar
  • 170 gm roasted hazelnuts
  • Choux pastry
  • 100 gm butter, diced
  • 200 gm (1 2/3 cups) plain flour
  • 4 eggs, at room temperature
01   For hazelnut praline, stir sugar and 40ml water in a saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves, then brush down sides of pan with a wet pastry brush and bring to the boil, swirling pan as mixture starts to caramelise, until dark caramel (5-6 minutes). Remove from heat, stir in hazelnuts and a pinch of salt with a lightly oiled fork, tip onto a lightly oiled baking tray and stand until set (40 minutes). Coarsely crush praline, then process three-quarters (reserve remaining in an airtight container to serve) in a food processor, scraping down sides occasionally, until a paste forms (5-6 minutes). Store in an airtight container at room temperature until required.
02   Bring milk to a simmer in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Meanwhile, whisk yolks and sugar in a bowl until pale (1-2 minutes), whisk in cornflour, then, whisking continuously, gradually add milk, then return to pan and whisk until simmering and thickened (1-2 minutes). Remove from heat, whisk in three-quarters of the praline paste, transfer to a bowl, cover directly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled (1-2 hours). Whisk hazelnut praline cream to loosen, then fold in whipped cream. Transfer to a large piping bag fitted with a 1cm fluted nozzle and refrigerate.
03   For choux pastry, bring butter, 250ml water and a pinch of salt to the boil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Remove from heat, quickly stir in flour until smooth, return to heat and beat for 2-3 minutes, then transfer to an electric mixer. Beat for 1 minute to cool slightly, then add eggs, one at a time, beating well and scraping down sides of bowl between additions, until glossy and smooth. Spoon into a piping bag fitted with a 1cm plain nozzle. Draw eight 6cm circles (use a cup or a cutter as a template), then pipe rings of choux pastry around each, sealing ends with a flick of the wrist. Pipe a second ring of pastry around the outside of the first so the rings touch, then pipe a third ring on top where the first two rings meet. Brush lightly with eggwash, scatter with hazelnuts and bake until golden brown and puffed (30-35 minutes). Cool on wire racks.
04   To assemble, halve choux rings horizontally and spread bases with a little hazelnut praline paste. Pipe hazelnut praline cream over the bases in a decorative pattern, scatter with crushed hazelnut praline, sandwich lightly with choux ring tops, dust with icing sugar and serve. These are best eaten on day of making.










Oct 2015

Oct 2015

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