6 ways to use pate a choux

When my sister and I were 8 and 9, respectively, one of our favorite pastimes was playing “restaurant”, which involved setting up a folding table in our living room, covering it with a classy tablecloth in the form of a pink blanket, printing out a long banner stating our restaurant’s name on a dot matrix printer {which incidentally was “Misty River” – don’t ask}, and lighting red glass “bistro” candles  – we created quite the ambiance.  I remember one menu in particular – we made a salad with radicchio, angel hair pasta with a tomato sauce and shrimp and profiteroles for dessert – all out of one of my mother’s cookbooks featuring Italian food.  I still to this day don’t know how the hell my sister and I made profiteroles at that age, but we did, and I actually don’t think they were terrible.

After dabbling in pate a choux at such a young age, for the last 23 years, I haven’t touched the stuff.  Then recently, I made some gougères for a cocktail party using this recipe.  I admit that I was a little intimidated by the recipe, worrying that my gougères wouldn’t rise properly or would taste like raw flour.  But they were delightful.  Soon after, I made the miniature salted caramel éclairs, which also were lovely and light.  I have come to realize that pate a choux is really one of those recipes that everyone should master and have in their repertoire because the possibilities are limitless, once you get over the initial trepidation.  I thought I would put together a little montage of some of my favorite recipes featuring this very special dough for inspiration – happy cooking!


{profiteroles with coffee ice cream from epicurious}


{paris-brest from treats-sf}


{gnocchi parisienne from food & wine}


{cream puff}


{cream puffs – for real – from martha stewart}


{miniature salted caramel éclairs from fleur del sel}


{gruyere, parmesan and chive gougères from fleur de sel}

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22 Responses to 6 ways to use pate a choux

  1. LaurenG says:

    Misty River will always be a Michelin-starred restaurant in my mind! Can’t wait to try these. Also, that photo of Layla is simply divine!

  2. All beautiful, cream puff particularly 🙂 My mum is queen of pâté a choux, so I learned from her how to make it – a definite family favourite pastry. Thanks.

  3. Fiery Ginger says:

    The best thing about pâté a choux besides the test is definitely its versatility. Everytime I make it, I often use it for at least 3 or 4 of the ways you listed above. My favorite is the gougeres though, because they look so innocent and yet pack a punch. Your photos look great!

  4. dpums says:

    I’m so happy to have found your blog! I love it! 🙂

    • fleurdeselsf says:

      Thank you Danielle! I am so happy to have found yours as well – it is absolutely beautiful and there are so many recipes I want to try! I especially love the conversation heart mini cheesecakes – brilliant! xo

  5. yum..i will have to keep all of your suggestions in mind…and your baby is just so stinkin cute..my little princess (toy poodle) does the same little stick out thing with her tounge…it just warms my heart 🙂 lovely post..sarah

    • fleurdeselsf says:

      Thank you for the shout out on my sweet Layla Sarah! You must be a true dog lover! I simply fall in love with dogs that can’t manage to keep their tongues all the way in their mouths – so sweet! xo

  6. Karen says:

    Oh my goodness, I would hate to choose just one to try. Actually I would like to have at least one of each.

  7. Such a great roundup! Pate a choux is one of those things that when you say it, people are like “Ohhh…that sounds complicated.” Then you explain it and they’re like, “Seriously?! THAT’S how you make profiteroles?!” Total fake out thing, and I love it! 🙂

    • fleurdeselsf says:

      Totally! I think anything in french in the culinary world intimidates people needlessly. As with most things, I love that as soon as you get a sense of how the dish should look and feel, it becomes almost second nature (like dough and pie crust). Thanks so much for stopping by Victoria! xo

  8. petit4chocolatier says:

    So much Yummy here! And “Cream Puff” is adorable!!

  9. smileycook says:

    Omg I love pate choux for this reason! You can make it sweet and savory and it is beyond light and airy! In a particular culinary class the whole culinary class made different pate chouxs so we were surrounded by all kinds lol! Yours looks FABULOUS!

    • fleurdeselsf says:

      That seriously sounds like a dream – how amazing! I want to enroll in that class! 🙂

      • smileycook says:

        You should def look into taking a cooking or baking class one of these day. Even myself I am planning on enrolling in a couple classes this summer, I love learning about new techniques and recipes in the kitchen 🙂

      • fleurdeselsf says:

        Absolutely! The last cooking class I took up in SF was a croissant class, which was so much fun. Learning techniques from true masters instead of trying to follow a recipe is such a pleasurable learning process. Will have to take another one soon – thank you for the inspiration! xo

      • smileycook says:

        Anytime! And that croissant class sounds like a dream! Another goal of mine now 🙂

  10. Lindsay, who is that cream puff of a puppy? Is that lovely creature yours? French bulldog too?

    And of course … viva la gougères! =)


  11. Reblogged this on Haute Mom Living and commented:

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