1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup milk
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
Pastry Cream :
1/3 cups sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons corn starch
4 egg yolks
1 1/3 cups milk
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
(or you can substitute your favorite pudding: chocolate, lemon, vanilla etc)
3/4 cup heavy cream
8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate
Combine the water, milk, butter, and salt in a small saucepan. Bring it to a boil. Stir in the flour and, while mixing, cook another minute or 2 to eliminate excess moisture. Transfer to a bowl and let cool for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Beat in one egg at at time. When they have all been beaten in and the paste is smooth and shiny, set aside to cool.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Form small logs out of the Choux paste on a baking sheet. If you have a pastry bag with large tips, you can squeeze them out neatly. or you can drop by large tablespoons for mini eclairs.
Bake the pastries for 15 minutes at 400 degrees. Reduce the oven to 350 degrees and bake for another 10 to 30 minutes, depending on the size of the eclairs you are making. When they are golden brown, turn the oven off. Poke a hole in the small end of the eclair and place them back in the oven for another 10 minutes to dry out. Remove the eclairs from the oven and let them cool a few minutes.
Combine the sugar, flour, corn starch, and egg yolks in a bowl. Beat with an electric mixer for 2 minutes until the mixture is thick and pale yellow
In a small saucepan, bring the milk to a boil. Gradually pour the milk into the egg mixture, stirring it in as you do so. When fully combined, pour all of it into the saucepan and bring to a boil, whisking constantly. Boil for 1 to 2 minutes then remove mixture from heat. Stir in the vanilla and set aside to cool.
Cover the top with wax paper or parchment to prevent a skin from forming. This cream may be refrigerated for a day or two before use or used immediately.
**If using Pudding mix follow directions for pie to make a thick filling
Heat the cream. Stir in the chocolate and continue heating and stirring until all of the chocolate is melted.
Assembly:To fill the eclairs, you can either use a pastry bag and squirt the pastry cream in through the drying hole or you can slice the eclairs lengthwise and scoop the filling inside and place the top half back on top
For the topping, dip or dribble the eclairs with the chocolate ganache
Makes 6 dozen éclair logs or 1 dozen mini eclairs