My Windmill Croquembouche
560g plain flour
24 large eggs
900g castor sugar
240g liquid glucose
Short crust pastry
400g plain flour
Pinch of salt
200g flaked almonds
300g of nibbed/pearl sugar
8 medium free-range egg yolks
130g caster sugar
30g plain flour
30g corn flour
700ml whole milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
Icing sugar, for dusting
200ml Grand Marnier
- Pre heat oven to 180°C/160°C Fan/Gas 4. Boil milk, water, salt and butter and remove from heat. Sieve flour and stirring with a wooden spoon. Put pan back on heat and stir until mixture comes away from the pan (2 mins).
- Add eggs one by one. Pipe choux paste on greaseproof lined tray. Bake for 25-30mins in batches – 6 batches to complete 150 mins.
Short Crust Pastry
- Sift the flour and salt, rubbing in the butter until it resembles breadcrumbs.
- Make a well in the centre adding the sugar and the eggs, mixing well.
- Refrigerate until needed to firm up the pastry.
- Thinly as possible, roll out pastry for windmill arms and bake at 180°C/160°C Fan/Gas 4 until crisp.
- Glaze with sugar syrup and nibbed sugar.
- For pastry cone roof, make a cone with a metal cream horn and bake until crisp at 180°C.
- Glaze with sugar syrup and flaked almonds.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar until they turn a pale blonde colour. Whisk in the flour and corn flour and set aside.
- Place the milk and vanilla syrup or vanilla bean paste in a heavy-bottomed saucepan; bring to a gentle simmer, stirring frequently. Remove the pan from the heat and let cool for 30 seconds.
- Slowly pour half of the hot milk onto the egg mixture, whisking all the time, then return the mixture to the remaining milk in the pan. It is important to slowly pour the hot milk onto the cold eggs before you return the mixture to the pan to prevent the eggs from scrambling.
- Bring the mixture back to the boil and simmer for one minute, whisking continuously, or until smooth. Divide into bowls and flavour with desired liquors.
- Pour the cream into a clean bowl and dust with icing sugar to prevent a skin forming. Cool as quickly as possible, by sitting the bowl of pastry cream in another larger bowl of ice water. When cooled, refrigerate until needed.