Christmas over - I think it's time to get experimental with some flavours! To kick start the new year why not make my Gin & Yuzu Choux buns? Yuzu is a citrus fruit that tends to grow in countries like Japan and Korea but a couple of years back it was branded a "superfruit" and entered supermarkets across the world. It has a taste described by some as a strange but delicious combination of lemon, grapefruit and mandarin. It works perfectly with gin, which is known to combine well with citrus fruits anyway, to give a subtle, sharp, creamy and irresistible dessert.
For the Choux Buns
- 125ml Water
- 125ml Whole milk
- 100g Butter
- 1/2 tsp Sugar
- 145g Plain flour
- 6 Medium eggs (approx.)
For the Yuzu Crème Pâtissière
- 500ml Whole milk
- 100g Caster sugar
- 6 Medium egg yolks
- 3 tbsp Cornflour
- 3 tbsp Custard powder
- 2 tbsp Butter
- 2/3 tbsp Yuzu juice (available online and some supermarkets)
For the Gin Glacé Icing
- 225g Icing sugar (sifted)
- 2/3 tbsp Gin
- 2/3 tbsp Water (to loosen icing if required)
- First prepare the choux pastry by adding the water, milk and butter to a saucepan and heating on a medium heat, stirring regularly, until the mixture is just beginning to boil.
- Quickly stir in the flour, beating vigorously, and cook the mixture for around 5 minutes or so until the mixture leaves the sides of the saucepan.
- Leave to cool slightly in the bowl of a freestanding electric mixer.
- When there is no longer visible steam coming from the mixture gradually add the eggs, one at a time, beating on a low speed setting.
- Keep adding egg until the mixture, when dropped off a spoon, leaves a "V" shape.
- Pipe or spoon the mixture onto a preprepared baking sheet, leaving space for the buns to expand.
- Spray the batter very lightly with water before baking at 180 degrees (fan) for 15 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and using a toothpick, prick a small hole in each bun to allow steam inside the bun to escape before placing on a cooling rack.
- Now it is time to make the Yuzu Crème Pâtissière. Do this by placing the milk in a saucepan and bring to the boil over a low heat.
- While the milk is heating up, whisk together the sugar, egg yolks, cornflour and custard powder in a bowl to form a smooth paste.
- When ready, pour the heated milk into the sugar and egg yolk paste and whisk until the mixture comes together before pouring back into the saucepan and whisking until the mixture begins to thicken and bubble (don't worry if it seems very lumpy at this stage).
- Whisk the butter into the mixture and ensure it has completely melted and incorporated before slowly adding in the yuzu juice.
- Pour the smooth Crème Pâtissière into a jug and allow to cool slightly before placing in a piping bag (with a small round nozzle attached) and piping into each of the cooled choux buns.
- Finally make your Gin Glacé Icing by beating together the icing sugar, gin and water to form a smooth but thick icing.
- Take each choux bun and dip the top into the icing before lifting up, allowing the excess icing to drip off, and place on a serving plate.
- Eat on the day baked for best results.