Ham choux buns - France

Tiziana Colombo - Nonna Paperina

  • Difficoltà

    Medium

  • Stagionatura

    30 months +

  • Makes about 60 pieces:
  • 300 g sifted white flour
  • 200 g butter
  • 30 g sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • 1/2 litre water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • For the filling:
  • 150 g ham
  • 100 g Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 50 g goat's cheese
  • salt
  • chopped thyme

Sift the flour and cut the butter into small cubes. In a saucepan, heat the water with the butter and a pinch of salt. As soon as it starts to boil, remove the pan from the heat and immediately put in all the flour stirring vigorously with a wooden spoon. Cook the mixture until it detaches from the sides of the saucepan. Pour it into a bowl and let it cool. When the mixture is cool, stir in the eggs, one at a time, then add salt and pepper. On a baking tray lined with parchment paper, make small mounds well spaced from each another.  Bake the buns in the oven at 170°C for 30 minutes. Blend the Parmigiano Reggiano and the ham cubes in a food processor to obtain a smooth mixture.  On the side, whisk the butter until frothy (to do so easily you should leave the butter to rest for at least one hour at room temperature). Add the ham and cheese, a pinch of salt and thyme. Gently fill the choux buns using a pastry bag with a long narrow tip. Serve the buns in a pyramid or each in their individual paper ramekin.

HISTORY

From the French word for cabbage, the choux is a neutral tasting pastry used in confectionery and gastronomy.  A possible etymology of the name may be the round shape resembling a cabbage. The small buns are one of the most common applications of choux pastry. They are filled as needed to obtain beignets, donuts, profiteroles. Less frequently fried, like the case of the Portuguese Sonhos. The choux pastry is very malleable and can be cooked in many different shapes. Thanks to its delicate flavour it lends itself to be filled with savoury ingredients and is often employed as a snack or appetizer. Occasionally it is stretched to form the foundation on which other ingredients rest, as with a pastry base, or the top layer of complex preparations, as one would do with a meringue.
Tiziana Colombo
Nonna Paperina