Chocolate Eclairs

Throw inhibitions aside as you unveil these tempting cream-filled chocolate pastries at your next dinner party.



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Ingredients
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    1   cup 
    all-purpose flour
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    3   tablespoons 
    unsweetened cocoa powder
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    2   tablespoons 
    sugar
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    1   cup 
    water
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    1/2  cup 
    butter
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    1/4  teaspoon 
    salt
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    4   
    eggs
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    4   cups 
    whipped cream
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    Bittersweet Hot Fudge Sauce (see below) or purchased hot fudge sauce (optional)
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    Powdered sugar (optional)
Bittersweet Hot Fudge Sauce
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    3   ounces 
    semisweet chocolate
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    1   ounce 
    unsweetened chocolate
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    1/2  cup 
    half-and-half or light cream
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    1/4  cup 
    sugar
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    1/4  teaspoon 
    vanilla


Directions
1.
Grease a cookie sheet; set aside. Stir together flour, cocoa powder, and sugar. In a saucepan bring water, butter, and salt to boiling; stir until butter melts. Add flour mixture all at once to boiling mixture, stirring vigorously. Cook and stir until mixture forms a ball. Cool 10 minutes.
2.
Add eggs, one at a time, beating with a wooden spoon about 1 minute after each addition or until smooth.
3.
Spoon the batter into a pastry bag fitted with a large plain round tip (1/2- to 1-inch opening). Pipe strips of batter (measuring about 4 inches long, 1 inch wide, and 3/4 inch high) 3 inches apart onto prepared cookie sheet.
4.
Bake in a 400 degree F oven for 33 to 35 minutes or until puffy. Remove from cookie sheet; cool on a wire rack.
5.
Up to 2 hours before serving, cut off tops of eclairs. Remove soft dough from inside. Pipe whipped cream into eclairs. Replace tops. Chill until serving time. If desired, top with Bittersweet Hot Fudge Sauce and dust with powdered sugar. Makes 12 eclairs.
Bittersweet Hot Fudge Sauce
1.
Coarsely chop semisweet chocolate and unsweetened chocolate. In a medium saucepan combine the chocolates, half-and-half or light cream, and sugar. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer mixture, uncovered, over low heat about 2 minutes or until mixture is creamy, stirring frequently. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Serve warm. Makes about 1 cup.

Make Ahead Tip
  • Bake and cool eclairs; freeze in an airtight container up to 2 months. Thaw 2 hours at room temperature before filling.
Nutrition information
Per Serving: cal. (kcal) 359, Fat, total (g) 30, chol. (mg) 151, sat. fat (g) 18, carb. (g) 20, fiber (g) 1, pro. (g) 5, vit. A (RE) 0, vit. C (mg) 0.59, sodium (mg) 172, calcium (mg) 70.68, iron (mg) 1.44, Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet
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