Oh yeeeeah! This one got me really excited! I’ve always loved salted caramel but for some, incredibly bizarre reason, I have never actually made anything salted caramel in my life. I know, it’s like a crime against baking!
As soon as I realised, I decided to act immediately and make the most salted caramel thing I could think of. These sensational salted caramel choux buns! Now if you’ve never made choux pastry before, don’t be alarmed. It really isn’t as difficult as everyone says it is. It’s actually very easy once you know the basics. So just follow my step by step guide and I promise you good results.
Right, here is what you will need to make 14 of the most incredible pastries in the whole world – EVER:
The Salted Caramel
- 75g Unsalted Butter
- 50g Soft Light Brown Sugar
- 50g Golden Caster Sugar
- 100g Golden Syrup
- 125ml Double Cream
- approx 2 tsp Sea Salt
For The Choux Pastry
- 220ml Water
- 80g Unsalted Butter
- Pinch of Salt
- Generous Pinch of Sugar
- 125g Plain Flour
- 220g Beaten Egg (approx 4 Eggs) Room Temp *
For the Filling
- 750ml Double Cream
- 1 Portion of Salted Caramel (Ingredients above)
The Caramel Icing
- 60g Unsalted Butter
- 110g Soft Light Brown Sugar
- 2 tbsp Milk
- 120g Icing Sugar
The Chocolate Drizzle (Optional)
- 75g Dark Chocolate
- 1-2 tbsp Milk
*I do recommend that you weigh the beaten egg rather than just using 4 whole eggs. Obviously eggs come in various sizes but weight is absolute and will guarantee a good outcome.
Ok, yes there’s a lot of components and it’s a bit of a labour of love. I can assure you though, it is 100% worth it!
Let’s get started.
* Place a large glass bowl into the fridge to chill ready for the choux pastry later *
To make the salted caramel, place the butter, both sugars and golden syrup in a small saucepan over a medium heat and melt together. Bring it to the boil and allow to simmer for 3 minutes. (Swirl once or twice if you need to.)
Turn down the heat, add in the cream and give it a good stir. Now, half a tsp at a time – add the salt, stirring well and tasting in-between each addition. (WARNING – be very careful not to burn yourself as it will still be hot!)
When it’s right for you, decant into a bowl, cover with cling film and pop into the fridge to chill until needed later.
Onto the choux pastry.
Lightly grease two large baking sheets (or line with silicone baking mats) and preheat your oven to 200°C/Fan 190°C.
In a medium sized saucepan, add the water, butter, salt & sugar. Heat until the butter has melted and it just comes to the boil.
With the pan still over the heat, dump in the flour and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon until it comes together to form one lump of dough.
Remove from the heat and tip the dough into that bowl you chilled in the fridge earlier. Leave to cool for 5 minutes.
Now you need the elbow grease!
A little at a time, add the beaten egg to the dough and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon in-between each addition.
At first it will split and seem like it is never going to come together – but it will, trust me. Just keep going.
You are after what they call a ‘dropping consistency.’ This basically means that when you lift up a large amount of the dough, it should drop back to the bowl within 5 seconds.
It will look a little something like this…
Pour the pastry into a large piping bag fitted with a large round nozzle.
Evenly spaced out, pipe 14 ‘blobs’ about 5cm in diameter. Try and keep them all the same shape and size if you can but don’t worry too much. I actually find the sporadic irregularity of choux pastry quite charming.
Gently dampen the tops with a little cold water. (If there are any ‘spikes’ of pastry, carefully pat them down a little.)
Pop them straight into the oven and bake for 20 – 25 minutes.
Take them out of the oven. Using either a skewer or a sharp knife, poke an air hole into each one then place straight back into the oven for a further 10 minutes. This will help to dry out the inside and prevent them from collapsing.
When they are crispy & golden – remove from the oven and place onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Meanwhile, let’s make the filling.
You could use a stand mixer with the whisk attachment but I like to do this by hand as you can very easily over whisk cream and it will begin to churn into butter. Not what you want!
So, ideally using a large bowl and whisk – whip the cream until soft peaks form.
Remove the salted caramel you made earlier from the fridge and add to the cream in thirds. Carefully fold in using a spatula until it’s all smooth & blended together.
I used a Piping Tube nozzle which made life a lot easier but if you don’t have one, just use your judgement and pick one you do have. So, prepare your piping bag with your chosen nozzle and add in the filling.
If you need to, expand those air holes you made earlier. Then insert the nozzle and squeeze in the filling. Be careful not to over do it though or they may burst.
When they’re all filled, leave to one side whilst we make the caramel icing.
In a small saucepan, melt together the butter, sugar & milk. Bring it to the boil then simmer for 2 minutes.
Remove from the heat and add in the icing sugar. Beat until smooth.
If it starts to set before you’ve covered all your buns – just pop it back over the heat again to melt a little and stir well.
Spoon the warm icing over each bun then allow to set at room temperature. (This should happen relatively quickly.)
Now if you want to make them look really tempting, make this quick chocolate drizzle.
Simply break the dark chocolate into a large bowl and add in the milk. Then either in the microwave or over a pan of barely simmering water – gently melt until shiny and smooth.
Pour into a piping bag and snip the end. Pipe zig zags over each bun, stand back, and marvel at your beautiful creations…
I mean seriously… look at them…
Ok, you’ve waited long enough. Now…. FILL YOUR FACE!! Hahahaha! They’re good right?? I told you they were worth it.
These are honestly one of the nicest things I have ever baked in my kitchen and salted caramel is, hands down, one of my all time favourite flavours.
I really hope you enjoyed the post, so much so – you give it a go yourself!
Until next time lovelies.