I have a soft spot for goat cheese. Actually, generally speaking, I have a soft spot for goats. I have a fantasy of keeping a small herd of goats and making cheese from their milk. I’ve researched it, so I doubt I’ll ever fulfill this dream, but it’s still in my head.
This week’s French Friday recipe is for goat cheese mini puffs. These are small savory cream puffs stuffed with an herbal goat cheese filling rather than pastry cream. Definitely intriguing.
First step is to make the cream puffs. I’ve only made pâte à choux for French Friday recipes. Previously, we made éclairs and gougères, and now these mini puffs. Each time, I’m amazed at how magical it is to see the pastry transforming from seemingly dense dough into puffy little balls. This time was no exception. Flour is stirred into a pot of boiling milk, water, and butter. Then, eggs are beaten into the warm mixture to make shiny dough. Spoonfuls of dough are placed on the sheet and baked until puffed and golden.
I didn’t read the recipe well before I went shopping, so I bought plain goat cheese instead of herbed. No problem. I added a teaspoon of dried herbes de Provence when I mixed the chèvre with cream cheese and cream.
I got a chance to whip out my never-before-used pastry bags with tips to fill the cream puffs. The recipe said a small plain tip, so I used the smallest tip which was the only one without fancy edges.
I think it’s meant for writing with icing because the filling was too thick to come out easily and I popped the bag.
When I switched over to a slightly larger star tip, it worked much better. Some of the puffs already had a little hole for filling. For the others, I used a chopstick to make a little hole for inserting the tip.
Due to a timing glitch last night, I didn’t serve these as an appetizer. I served them as an accompaniment to a bowl of soup for lunch.
I have to say that I didn’t LOVE these as much as I expected to, though I did like them. I ended up baking the puffs the night before I filled them, and might have stored them a little too airtight so they weren’t crusty, but a little soggy. I still have some left, so I might reheat them a bit before filling and see if that improves things. I liked the impressive presentation though. I’m going to a holiday potluck next month, and these might be the perfect finger food to bring for my contribution.
You can find the recipe in Dorie Greenspan’s book Around My French Table. I’m looking forward to reading about what my fellow FFwD bloggers thought about this week’s recipe. Check out their links at French Fridays with Dorie.