Years ago I wanted to make real, homemade cream puffs. I made a cream filling that was fabulous, but on the time consuming side. A few years later, I began experimenting with easier, short cut options and came across one that very quickly replaced the original recipe. In all honesty, I can’t remember the original filling recipe, this one is so good.
Mom and Dad came over for lunch today and I used that as my excuse to make cream puffs. The recipe is simple. 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, 1 cup water. Combine in a sauce pot and bring to a boil. Add 1 cup flour and stir until the dough forms a ball. Remove from the heat and add 4 eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each one. I use an ice cream scoop to form the shells and then bake for about 20-25 minutes at 400 degrees. Let cool, cut the top off and remove insides.
Now the filling … I almost feel guilty for this one. One small package instant Jello vanilla pudding and two cups cream (I like regular, but heavy works also). Mix with an electric mixer. It will take all of two minutes to get the right consistency.
Fill, top and then use powdered sugar, melted chocolate or (as pictured above) caramel to drizzle over the tops. The caramel is homemade, but I don’t have the recipe on hand as I made it months ago for a cake then froze it. Let defrost, drizzle then go.
These cream puffs have been requested by family, used for showers, parties and various family events. And the recipe has not changed. I think when I made these today I spent all of 15 minutes actually doing anything. The rest was wait time – wait for the butter/water to boil, wait for the shells to bake, wait for them to cool .. But, as often happens, simple is best and these cream puffs just prove that point one delicious bite at a time.
There are no leftovers.
No need to feel guilty about the recipe. Note that Grandmom used boxed mixes as the base for several of her dishes. And that e’re still trying to figure out her “extras” in the recipe. Using a prepared base is in your genes and figuring out what extras to use as well.