Saturday, July 2, 2011

Durian Puff

Can you smell the aromatic and yet pungent durian in the air? Durian season is here again. I love the creamy and buttery 猫山王 aka Cat Mountain species. I love my durian bitter with a little sweetness. When you get to eat a really good durian, a few is enough to make you euphoric and satisfy your insatiable craving. I like to patronize this stall called Combat Durian at Balestier. Though it may be a little more expensive, you never get disappointed. I also realize that not all D24 durians are the same. The taste and texture of the cheaper ones are not as good as the more expensive ones. I guess there's different grades for D24.
Besides eating durian on its own, we can also create cakes, pastries and kuehs out of it. I'm in the mood for durian puffs and here it is. This is the second time I've made durian puffs. This time, I want my durian cream to be stronger and purer - thus it has very little cream (20% only) added to the pure durian pulp. I must say the durian puffs were very delicious, just like eating pure durian. I'm thinking of making durian eclairs and cake soon ..........

Recipe (Choux Puff recipe adapted from Okashi Sweet Treats with love)

Choux Puff
80g water
75g fresh milk
50g unsalted butter, cut into cubes
Pinch of sugar
Pinch of salt
2-3 eggs
75g cake flour or plain flour
  1. Preheat oven to 200 degree celsius. Sift flour once. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a small saucepan, combine water, milk, butter, sugar and salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, the immediately remove from heat.
  3. Using a wooden spoon, quickly stir in the flour until combined, and mixture forms a ball. Return to heat and cook, stirring constantly until the mixture leaves the sides of the saucepan and a film forms on the bottom of the pan.
  4. Transfer mixture to a clean bowl. Add eggs one at a time, beating with a wooden spoon until each egg is fully incorporated before adding the next egg. Alternatively, you can use an electric mixer with the paddle attachment if you do not have any arm strength left.
  5. Test the batter by taking a scoop of it using a wooden spoon. When you coat the spoon with it, the batter should hang down and form a smooth triangular shape. If you can't see it, that means the batter needs a little more egg.
  6. Pour choux dough into the pipingbag fitted with a 1.5cm or 2cm plain piping tip. Pipe out 4cm (medium) or 3 cm (small) circles onto the baking sheet and gently smoothen out the pointed peaks with a moistened finger.
  7. Bake choux puffs for about 20 minutes at 200 degree celsius, then reduce temperature to 180 degree celsius and continue baking for another 20 minutes.
Makes about 24 medium or 30 small puffs.

Durian Cream
600g durian flesh
120g heavy cream
  1. Remove 600g of durian flesh from the durians. Mesh them with a wooden spoon until it becomes almost smooth.
  2. Using a hand held electric mixer with the whisk attached, whip the heavy cream in a cold mixer bowl until soft peaks form.
  3. Fold the whipped cream into the durian flesh until well blended.
  4. Chill the durian cream in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes before using.
To Assemble
  1. Using a serrated knife, cut the choux puffs into half.
  2. To fill the choux puff with the durian cream, you can either use an ice-cream scoop or fill a pastry bag with a large plain circle tip, about 2cm, and pipe it onto the bottom half of the choux puff.
  3. Top it up with the other half of the choux puff and gently press it down.
  4. To serve, dust the puffs with snow powder sugar. If not eating immediately, store them in an airtight container and refrigerate.

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