INDIVIDUAL SAINT HONORÉ CAKE
This is one of the most sophisticated and difficult desserts to make in French gastronomy. This is a simplified recipe. Here the cakes are individual, but by modifying only the puff pastry (cutting a large disc instead of 4 smaller ones) this cake can be prepared as a round (or rectangular) cake and then cut into portions.
Ingredients (serves 4):
For the two types of pastry
1 roll of puff pastry
4 whole eggs + 1 egg to brush on the choux pastries
100g unsalted butter
5cl of milk
100g of sugar
150g of flour
1 pinch of fine salt
For the cream
25cl skimmed milk
3 whole eggs
30g of flour
50g unsalted butter
For the decoration
1 whole vanilla pod
20cl whole liquid cream
200g of sugar
15g icing sugar
Preheat the oven to 220°C (thermostat 7-8) and while the oven is heating up, prepare the two types of pastry.
Using a biscuit cutter, cut out 4 discs of puff pastry and prick them with a fork.
For the choux pastry
In a small saucepan, put the water, milk, sugar, salt and cold butter cut into small pieces. Bring the mixture to the boil, then remove from the heat.
Add the sifted flour and mix with a spatula. Then put the mixture back on the heat and stir vigorously until it no longer sticks to the bottom of the pan. Pour the mixture into a bowl and add the whole eggs (one egg at a time).
Then put the choux pastry into a piping bag fitted with a nozzle.
On the puff pastry discs, form 4 circles of choux pastry, working from the inside out.
Prepare 3-4 small choux pastries per person on another baking tray. Then brush them with egg yolk and bake at 220°C for 15-20 minutes.
Prepare the custard
Cut the vanilla pod in half and scrape out the seeds.
Bring the milk and vanilla to the boil in a saucepan.
Beat the eggs with the sugar to whiten them, and then add the flour. When the milk boils, pour it over the preparation after removing the vanilla pod.
Then put the preparation back into the saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring continuously with a whisk. Cook for 3-5 minutes from boiling, stirring continuously.
Then add 50g of butter and cool the custard, covering it with cling film.
For decorating and finishing the cake
To make the whipped cream for the decoration, whip 10cl of liquid cream with the icing sugar, then set aside in the fridge.
Whip the rest of the cream and gently incorporate it into the cold custard.
Pierce the crowns and choux pastries, then fill them with the cream using a piping bag.
In a saucepan, cook the sugar without touching it until a light caramel is obtained. Caramelise the choux by dipping them in the caramel, then stick them onto the crowns. Decorate the Saint-Honoré with the whipped cream using a piping bag.