First let me “D-éclair” this is not a cake walk. This recipe is time consuming; generally saved for birthdays or special occasions. When we do make it, we usually triple it in order to please everyone — each needs his fill of one… or five éclairs.
1 c. flour
¼ tsp. salt
½ c. shortening
1 c. boiling water
Sift flour with salt in a bowl and set aside. On the stove, combine boiling water with the fat in a saucepan. Keep on low heat until fat is melted. Add flour and salt mixture all at once and stir vigorously until mixture forms a ball and leaves the sides of the pan. Cook for about 2 more minutes until the mixture appears dry. Remove from heat. Add unbeaten eggs one at a time and beat well after each addition. Continue beating until a thick dough forms.
With a large gallon-sized Ziploc back, pour in the dough. Zip close making all air escape. Cut a ½-inch slit in the corner of one of the bags to create your own pastry bag. Gently push the dough out onto a brown paper-lined baking sheet. You can use Kraft paper or a paper bag that has been cut into one sheet the size of the pan. You will want to arrange the eclairs about 2 inches apart. You will push out the dough to make about 4-inch long logs.
Bake in a preheated oven at 425 degrees for 15 minutes. Then without opening the oven, reduce heat to 400 for another 7 minutes. Then reduce again for another 7 minutes at 375 degrees. These will cook for anywhere between 30 to 40 minutes – they are done when you no longer see moisture on the surface. It is important not to open the oven during the beginning part of the baking.
Remove to wire racks to let cool. Once cool, cut a slit in side of each log and remove doughy centers if necessary.
Spoon in cream filling (recipe below)
1 pkg. Vanilla Instant Pudding
1 c. milk, cold
Whisk together and let sit
Meanwhile beat together
1 cup of whipping cream
¼ c. Powdered sugar.
Once whipped gradually fold in the cream into the pudding mixture.
You can adorn the tops with a little chocolate icing.
1 T butter
1 Heaping Tablespoon of Cocoa
½ c. powdered sugar
½ T to 1 T milk to
Mix above together to desired consistency. Again with the same method, place frosting into a sandwich bag. Zip close and snip a very small section of the corner to create another pastry bag. Create swirly marks on top of the filled e-clair with the frosting.
Refrigerate until ready to serve. Enjoy!