Thursday, December 18, 2014

How to Make Cream Puffs... And Delight Everyone!


Welcome To My World!



We've done cream puffs before, but honestly, this is a Win/Win/Win and if you're not making cream puffs for a party, you should be because people will love you and these days, I'm okay with soaking up all the brownie points I can get!

First, we've got some fun stuff happening here.... The Herne Family Christmas Party....


And then there's this little sweet cheeks!


And a very special visitor with a bunch of Herne cousins!!!  So stinkin' cute!


And then there's this:

(Right now I'm going to choir practice where they overlook my narrow range of notes because they're very good people... and the pic that's supposed to be here isn't coming through to my e-mail from my phone, so it might or might not be here in the morning!!!!)  :)

My school age daycare buds have put together a "Help for the Homeless' opportunity day this Saturday. They'll be spending the day (or parts of it!) outside in tents, no electronics, no screens, dressed in layers and fighting the cold. Weather: 30 ° and calm and cloudy. Honestly, here in upstate in December, this is mild!!!!

So far my buds have raised over $500 to donate to the Open Door Mission (for men) and Bethany House (for women). I'm so proud of them!

We'll have a soup and bread lunch to reflect what they'd have in a soup kitchen. And at the end (I hope...) they'll have a heightened awareness of how special life... and life in America!... truly is.

Okay, so back to cream puffs....



Shells:

1 stick butter
1 cup water
1 cup flour
4 large eggs (I had two HUGE eggs and one normal one, but that's normal around here!)



In 3 quart saucepan, bring water and butter to a boil. Turn off heat when butter is melted, stir in 1 cup flour until well blended.

Add eggs, one at a time, beating with spoon (think EXERCISE OPP!!!) until smooth after each addition. Using a regular teaspoon, drop small mounds of dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet, about two inches apart (puffs rise).



Bake at 400° for about twenty minutes until deep golden brown. If you take them out too early they're too tender to hold the pudding, and we want these bad boys to hold the pudding!

Cool.  Then slice of top leaving the hollowed shell ready for pudding or whipped cream filling.



Pudding:

4 tablespoons butter, melted in 3 quart saucepan
1 1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup corn starch
4 cups milk
4 egg yolks
2 teaspoons vanilla

Melt butter in pan. Turn off heat. Mix sugar and cornstarch together. Blend into melted butter. Whisk in milk and egg yolks, then return to medium/medium/high heat and stir while cooking. Bring to a boil, boil and stir one minute. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Stir well, chill. (If you don't like "skin" on top of real pudding, lay a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the hot pudding. This prevents the skin from forming...

Although I love the skin!!!!

Frosting: (I often have this made ahead of time and tucked in freezer or fridge or cupboard... )

1 Stick butter (melted in 3 quart saucepan... I'm sensing a trend!!!!)
1/2 cup Hershey's cocoa
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups Confectioners/powdered/10X sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix cocoa and salt into melted butter. Add powdered sugar and milk. Whisk. When smooth, add vanilla. Frosting thickens as it cools, but if it's too thick, a dash of milk (slightly more than a dab and less than a splash) can be stirred in until frosting is desired consistency.

THIS IS MY GO-TO CHOCOLATE FROSTING.

It is Hershey's Perfect Chocolate Frosting recipe, it is amazing and should always be respected. Spoons and fingers should be licked clean at all appropriate points.

Children will rise up and call you blessed for making this.

I'm not kidding.

There was a huge tray of of these. I mean 14" across, huge tray of deliciousness and I forgot to take a picture.

So these guys escaped detection and I got a picture of these six BEFORE THEY WERE DISCOVERED!!!!

And then there's this;


Nothing like candlelight, cookies and candy! Sounds like a party to me!


16 comments:

  1. GO fund raising kiddos! Homeless missions have always been a big part of my life ever since I first volunteered in one as a teen. Setting all three of my LI books in a homeless mission was just a natural step, from the reality of working in them for twenty years to... fiction. :)
    Anyway, my sister makes these all the time and I LOVE THEM. So yummy. And not as good a few days later so it's a good excuse to eat them right away.

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    1. VirgGinnie, Yes!!! Time is clutch in the enjoyment of cream puffs! Do not waste time!!! :)

      Well, you started this idea of the Help the Homeless brewing after I tried to find a way to do a Little Library for the area migrant project but they already have an extensive book program... and then I thought we could do a Christmas project with them, but that didn't work, either.... But when my little darlings were kind of feeling sorry for themselves one day, and had a day off and wanted something fun to do, I suggested (in my own inimitable way) that they get off their middle-class suburban butts and help someone less fortunate because their lives are cake compared to most others... AND THEY DID IT! :) They spent the day planning and figuring out what they could do. So now we get to DO IT!!!! I'm psyched!

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    2. Viriginia, I enjoyed your LI books. I really liked that they were set in a homeless mission.

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    3. I loved that series too, Virginia -- are you going to do more books for LI? (sorry for hijacking your blog, Ruthy.)

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  2. Great idea! So proud of the kids for taking ownership of this project! I wish more "middle-class suburbans" and upper-class ones could get off their butts and help someone less fortunate. (I apologize if this posted twice.)

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    1. Dawn, I bet more kids would do this stuff if parents (or some adult) takes the initiative to lead it... I'm super proud of these guys, a friend of one of the families (and a great guy) just dropped $50 into the pot on his lunch hour... He wanted the kids to know he thinks this is a great thing.

      How stinkin' nice is that????

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  3. Great project. Our youth groups have always done homeless projects but your guys take it to a new and more personal level.

    And cream puffs! Who knew they were so easy.

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    Replies
    1. Julie, our youth group does it too, with the high schoolers. I don't know of anyone who tortures younger kids like this, so we could be trendsetters.

      Or out on bail by Sunday!!!!

      :)

      Either way a cheerful thought!

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  4. cream puffs! don't wanna make them though- randalls sells those suckers in the frozen section with cream filling and dipped in chocolate - don't take long to thaw either! unfortunately....but none for me - past time to get some weight off - I know eating Mexican food before dr weigh in yesterday *might* fluctuate my weight by *maybe* 5 pounds but the other 75 came from something else and needs to go :-( and today is house cleaning day so gotta get off my middle class suburban butt and make some headway though nothing unrealistic like completely done..
    these look good though but knowing me I'd be eating the filling before getting the other part done
    Susanna

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    1. Susanna, I love doing low or no-carb diets because I love to eat. I'm not good at starving myself. So if I have to fill up on cheese/meats/veggies, I'm okay with that!

      You go, girl! I have absolute faith in your abilities.

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  5. I made eclairs many years ago and was the most popular girl to invite to a potluck party for awhile but then I lost the recipe. I really should try these. How many do they make, though? I figure I could cut the recipe in half but I'd still have too many for me to eat. When I was still working at the school, I'd just bring the extras and leave them in the staff room. Can you freeze them?

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    Replies
    1. Kav, this works perfectly for eclairs, too. Same thing, different shape!

      For eclairs I just make long "tootsie roll" style logs on the cookie tray and bake them until they're slightly crisp. Not too tender or they'll fall apart.

      VOILA!!!! Done!!!! And you can freeze these shells in an airtight bag for months. It's awesome!

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  6. Hahaha! Hijack away! You know the fun thing about a blog is you can pretend you're all cozied up in someone's living room! Chatting and sipping tea or drinkin' a cuppa!

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  7. These look amazing. I'd love to eat them. But I'll probably never go to the trouble to make them! LOL So will you just invite me up next time you make them??

    Loved the photos!!

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  8. You had me at cream puff, Ruthy. Nuf said.

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