The flavour of these Raspberry Earl Grey Cream Puffs are inspired by a local dessert/chocolate shop, Beta5 Chocolates. The cream puffs have a crunchy sweet topping and are filled with a tangy fresh raspberry cream and uplifting, sweet Earl Grey Tea pastry cream.
I’ve been making these cream puffs for the last 7 years, so their appearance has evolved over time, but they taste just as amazing.
If you’ve been a reader of my blog for a while, you’ll know that Earl Grey tea is one of my favourite teas.
I love incorporating the flavour of earl grey into baked goods, like these cream puffs.
What is a cream puff?
Cream puffs are also known as profiteroles, or “chou a la creme,” in French.
It consists of a choux pastry filled with sweetened whipped cream, pastry cream or custard.
What is choux pastry?
Choux (“shoo”) pastry, or “pate a choux” is a baked dough made of flour, butter, eggs, and water.
Choux dough can be sweet or savoury.
An example is gougeres, which are a savoury puff made with cheese.
How does the choux pastry puff up?
With no leavening agents in the dough, the choux pastry relies on its high moisture content to create the “puff.”
When the choux dough hits the hot oven, steam is trapped and forces the pastry to puff up, creating a hollow cavity.
What is a choux au craquelin?
A craquelin is a crunchy, sweet cookie-like topping that is placed on top of the cream puff before it is baked.
The craquelin dough is made of flour, sugar, and butter.
What are in the Raspberry Earl Grey Cream Puffs?
There are 5 main components to these Raspberry Earl Grey Cream Puffs:
- craquelin: the sweet and crunchy cookie-like topping that goes over top of the choux pastry
- choux pastry dough: the main component of this pastry that puffs up
- raspberry puree: fresh raspberry blended with sugar and lemon juice and thickened until syrupy
- earl grey pastry cream: a tea-infused custard made with eggs thickened with flour and cornstarch
- whipped cream: to lighten both the raspberry puree and earl grey pastry cream
How to make Raspberry Earl Grey Cream Puffs
Make the craquelin:
Mix the flour, butter and sugar together to form a disc of dough.
Place the dough in between two pieces of parchment paper.
Chill the dough in the fridge for 15-20 minutes.
Roll the dough out to a thickness of about ⅛″ and cut out circles about 2″ in diameter with a round cookie cutter.
Place the discs onto a parchment lined baking tray and pop into the freezer to chill.
Make the choux pastry:
Melt the butter, sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium heat.
Add all the flour in at once.
Stir vigorously with a wooden spoon until a ball of dough forms.
Transfer the dough into a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.
Cool down the dough by turning the mixer on low.
Gradually add in the beaten egg until the choux dough becomes shiny and glossy, and holds a “v” shape when you can pull the paddle straight up. Be careful not to add too much egg at once.
Make the raspberry puree:
Blend the raspberries in a blender.
Add the pureed raspberries, sugar and lemon juice to a saucepan.
Cook over medium heat until thickened and syrupy.
Strain the raspberry puree to remove any seeds. Set aside.
Make the Earl Grey pastry cream:
Whisk together the eggs, sugar, flour, cornstarch in a bowl.
Heat the cream and milk in a saucepan over low heat, and add the earl grey tea. Steep in the cream for 5 minutes.
Gradually add the hot cream to the egg yolks to temper the mixture.
Pour the warmed egg mixture back into the saucepan and whisk over medium heat, until thickened.
Set aside and cool.
Make the stabilized whipped cream:
Beat the heavy whipping cream and powdered sugar until soft peaks.
Heat about 1 Tbsp of cream in the microwave and sprinkle gelatin over the top. Set aside to bloom.
Drizzle the bloomed gelatin into the whipping cream and continue to whip until stiff peaks.
Can I make the craquelin ahead of time?
Yes, make the craquelin before making the choux dough.
If you want, you can layer the cut out craquelin cookies in between parchment and freeze for up to 2 months in an airtight container.
Can I make the choux dough ahead of time?
You can store the choux pastry dough in the refrigerator for up to 2 days prior to making the cream puffs.
Just transfer the dough into a piping bag fitted with a large round tip, seal it and place in the fridge.
You can also bake the choux pastry a day prior to when you want to assemble the cream puffs.
Tips & tricks
The craquelin cookie topping may bake with some excess at the bottom of the cream puff. Totally normal!
Just go around and gently peel off the extra topping, and if you want to make it neater, use a microplane grater to “file” the edges.
For the choux pastry, it’s imperative to add in the egg mixture a little bit at a time. Test the batter periodically to see if you can pull the paddle out with the batter forming a “v” shape draping from the paddle. If you add too much egg, the cream puff won’t rise and puff well.
If you plan to eat the cream puffs right away, you can omit the gelatin in the stabilized whipped cream. Adding the gelatin helps extend the shelf life of the creams.
There are a number of components for this cream puff, so I recommend making the raspberry puree and Earl Grey pastry cream the night beforehand. You can also bake off the cream puffs in advance to make it easier on yourself.
Substitutions and variations
The sky’s the limit when it comes to different cream puff flavour combinations.
Try other fruit creams, chocolate, or matcha pastry cream.
Add an ice cream to the inner cavity of the cream puff.
Or you can leave it plain with vanilla whipped cream.
Omit the craquelin, pipe the choux into a long tube and make eclairs, or choux nuts.
During the holidays, you can even pipe smaller-sized cream puffs and make croquembouche for a festive scene.
How to serve the Raspberry Earl Grey Cream Puffs
Due to the nature of the dessert, serve the cream puffs freshly made, most preferably on the same day.
The choux pastry will become soggy and the cream will weep over an extended period of time.
If you’re feeling extra indulgent, you can serve the cream puffs with a scoop of ice cream and fresh raspberries.
How to store cream puffs
Store unfilled cream puff (choux pastry) in an airtight container for up to 2 days.
On the day you’re ready to fill the cream puffs, place the baked choux pastry in the oven at 300F for 10-15 minutes to crisp up.
Let the puffs completely cool before filling.
For filled cream puffs, place them into a container in the refrigerator for up to a maximum of 2 days.
Can you freeze cream puffs?
If it’s an ice cream-filled cream puff, yes you can.
For a whipped cream-filled cream puff, yes.
However, if you’re making these Raspberry Earl Grey Cream Puffs, no.
Unfortunately, the pastry cream will not freeze well and will not have an optimal texture.
Other Earl Grey recipes you may like:
If you love Earl Grey tea, be sure to check out these other recipes:
This Raspberry Earl Grey Cream Puff has been one of my ultimate most favourite flavour combinations for the past several years.
Freshly eaten, the cream puffs alternate from crunchy to creamy. The tangy and tart raspberries pair so well together with the earl grey tea-flavoured pastry cream. And it’s all lightened up with freshly whipped cream — what’s not to love?
If you enjoyed this recipe, be sure to tag me on Instagram @siftandsimmer or leave me a comment/rating below! I’d love to see your creations! Have you tried the Raspberry Earl Grey Cream Puffs from Beta5 Chocolates?
Raspberry Earl Grey Cream Puffs (Choux au Craquelin)
For accuracy and precision in baking recipes, use weight (metric) measurements when available.
Craquelin (cookie topping):
- 70 g unsalted butter
- 70 g all-purpose flour
- 45 g granulated cane sugar
- 60 g salted butter
- 120 ml water
- 75 g all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs beaten (won't need all the egg)
- 15 g granulated cane sugar
Stabilized Whipped Cream:
- 150 ml heavy whipping cream divided
- 14 g powdered sugar
- 2 g powdered gelatin
- 170 g fresh raspberries
- 45 g granulated cane sugar
- 15 ml lemon juice
Earl Grey Pastry Cream:
- 2 egg yolks
- 50 g granulated cane sugar
- pinch sea salt
- 3 g cornstarch
- 7 g all-purpose flour
- 180 ml whole milk
- 30 ml heavy cream
- 3 earl grey tea bags
- ¼ tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp bergamot extract
- 1 Tbsp freeze-dried raspberry powder optional
For the craquelin:
- In a small bowl, cream together the butter, flour and sugar in a bowl until it forms a dough.
- Shape into a disc and place the dough between two pieces of parchment paper.
- Chill in the fridge for 15 minutes.
- Remove the dough from the fridge and use a rolling pin to roll the dough out to appx ⅛" thickness.
- Use a round 2" cookie cutter and cut out discs. Place the cut out discs onto a sheet of parchment paper and store in the freezer until ready to use. You should get approximately 10-12 discs, depending on how large your cutter is.
- Prepare a large 12" by 17" baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper. Set aside.
For the choux pastry:
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- In a small pot, add in the water, butter, sugar and bring to a boil over medium high heat.
- Add in the flour at once and reduce the heat to low. Stir the mixture vigorously with a wooden spoon until it forms a ball of dough, about 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat.
- Using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment fitted, transfer the dough to the mixer and turn it on low speed. This will help cool down the dough before adding the eggs.
- Once the dough is lukewarm, gradually add in the lightly beaten egg in a few additions, but be careful not to add too much egg.
- The dough will look curdled between additions, but don't worry, it will absorb the egg. Scrape down the bowl periodically. To check if you've added enough egg, pull up the paddle from the mixture -- if the mixture hanging down from the paddle forms a "v," it's ready. The dough will be shiny and glossy.
- Transfer the choux dough to a large piping bag, fitted with a round tip.
- Holding the piping tip straight and upright, pipe round dollops about 1.5" in diameter and 1" in height on the prepared baking sheet and leave a few inches in between each dollop. Repeat until all the dough is used up. (Should end up with 10-12 mounds).
- Fill a small dish with a little water and wet the tip of your finger to dab down any pointed tops in the choux dough.
- Place a frozen craquelin disc on top of each choux dough mound.
- Bake the cream puffs at 400°F for 10 minutes.
- Lower to 350°F and bake for another 25-30 minutes. Remove puffs from the oven and cut off the tops using a sharp serrated knife. Place them back into the oven with the door slightly ajar and the oven turned off for about 15 minutes to fully dry out.
- Remove puffs from oven and let cool on a rack.
- At this point in time, cream puffs can be sealed in an airtight container for up to 2 days at room temperature if not using right away.
For the whipped cream:
- In a medium bowl, whisk together 135ml heavy cream and powdered sugar, until almost stiff peaks. Set aside.
- Pour 1 Tbsp (15ml) cream into a small bowl. Add the powdered gelatin on top and let it bloom, about 5-10 minutes.
- Microwave the gelatin mixture for 10-15 seconds, until gelatin is dissolved.
- Drizzle gelatin cream mixture into the whipping cream and whip until stiff.
- Store the whipped cream in the fridge until ready to use.
- *Note: Whipped cream will be divided in half for Raspberry Cream and Earl Grey Pastry Cream.
For the raspberry cream:
- Add the raspberries into a blender. Blend the raspberries into a puree.
- Transfer the puree into a small saucepan.
- Add in the sugar and lemon juice.
- Cook the mixture over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until thickened and syrupy, about 20 minutes.
- Pour the raspberry puree through a sieve into a clean bowl.
- Cover and chill in the refrigerator until ready to use.
- Fold in half of the stabilized whipped cream mixture.
For the Earl Grey Pastry Cream:
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, sea salt, cornstarch, and flour. Set aside.
- To a small saucepan, add in milk, heavy whipping cream and earl grey tea bags and bring to a gentle simmer.
- Let the tea steep in the cream for about 5 minutes on low heat, and use a spatula to gently press on the tea bags to extract the tea.
- Remove the tea bags.
- While whisking the egg yolk mixture, pour in the hot tea-infused milk to the egg mixture a little at a time. This is to temper/warm the egg yolks so that they don't scramble.
- When the milk and egg yolks have been incorporated, pour the warmed mixture back into the saucepan and whisk, over medium-low heat until it thickens, about 2-3 minutes.
- Once the pastry cream thickens (when you can draw a line on the back of a wooden spoon and it holds its shape), remove from heat.
- Whisk in the vanilla and bergamot extract and cool down the mixture over an ice bath.
- Transfer the cooled pastry cream to a clean bowl, cover with plastic wrap and place into the fridge to chill.
- Fold in half of the stabilized whipped cream into the Earl Grey pastry cream to lighten.
- Fill a piping bag with the raspberry cream, fitted with a star piping tip.
- Fill a second bag with the Earl Grey pastry cream, fitted with a round piping tip.
- Pipe in the Earl Grey cream into the cavity of the choux.
- Add a layer of raspberry cream.
- Place the top "lid" of the cream puff and garnish with freeze-dried raspberry powder. Repeat with the remainder.
- Enjoy immediately. If not consuming right away, store cream puffs in the fridge.