Thursday, May 27, 2010

Daring Bakers tackle a Croquembouche

The May 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Cat of Little Miss Cupcake. Cat challenged everyone to make a piece montée, or croquembouche, based on recipes from Peter Kump’s Baking School in Manhattan and Nick Malgieri.

For the recipes, head on over to the daring kitchen and give it a try!

I really enjoyed this daring bakers challenge. I was so happy that it was something I could accomplish in just under a couple of hours too! I baked off the profiteroles, and whipped up some pastry cream in the evening, then made caramel and constructed the croquembouche the next day.

It felt like a very fancy dessert, the techniques are classic but simple and I'll definitely be trying to perfect my technique by making this again soon!

I did find that the dough was way too runny, you can see my profiteroles just spreading on the baking sheet, I think my eggs must have been bigger than the ones used in the original recipe. I also think that milk is a nice addition instead of water, these were extremely eggy pastries! After reading some of the comments it seems I was not alone. I'll be using another recipe in the future.

The pastry cream came together nice and quick, my only change was omitting the sugar and adding a can of dulce de leche for a delicious spin on classic pastry cream.

The really tricky part was the assembly. I dipped each pastry into the molten caramel to construct and ended up with a few little burns on my finger. Any attempt to use tools resulted in a big mess. I think maybe constructing layer by layer would result in a safer construction, and also a little less caramel, these were difficult to eat with a thick layer of caramel on them!

Thanks so much for the challenge, I will definitely be revisiting this one!

If anyone has any advice for playing with spun sugar, I'd love to hear about it!


Darlene said...

It looks delicious, Jenny! What a fantastic accomplishment.

Anonymous said...

Very impressive! I'm sad that I didn't have time to try my hand at veganizing this challenge, but your photos are quite inspiring. Perhaps I'll still play with the idea when I get a chance.

Renata said...

Your Pièce Montée looks great! I played a lot with the caramel and I posted some photos and video links from where I got all the inspiration and techniques. My blog is in Portuguese, though, so if you want further information, let me know. It's a lot of fun!

The Cilantropist said...

Awesome job with the croquembouche! Soooo tall. :)