It had to be done. After making the gougeres, I just had to have a go at adjusting the recipe and making eclairs. These are slightly sweet, moist, soft, light and airy, but with a slight bite to them, and not very bread-y at all. Their flavor is pretty mild. I allowed mine (well, some of them) to get cold before slicing them, and filling with vegan cream cheese and something sweet. They disappeared rather quickly after that.

Sliced, and filled with vegan cream cheese and apricot jam / blood orange marmalade / chocolate spread.

Sliced, and filled with vegan cream cheese and apricot jam / blood orange marmalade / chocolate spread.

4 oz blanched almond flour
2 1/2 oz tapioca flour/starch
2 tbsp flax meal
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vinegar
4 fl oz water
4 tbsp margarine (I use spreadable Earth Balance)
3 – 4 eggs, well beaten

Put all the dry ingredients in a bowl, and mix briefly with a wooden spoon.

Put the vinegar, water, and margarine in a small saucepan, and bring rapidly to a boil.

Remove the saucepan from the heat, and immediately shoot in the dry ingredients and stir maniacally with the wooden spoon for about 30-60 seconds, until the dough thickens and smooths out somewhat into a ball.

Allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes so that the eggs you’re about to add don’t turn into scrambled egg.

Now, using a hand held electric whisk, incorporate the egg, one tablespoon at a time. At first, the mixture will soften and start to look like soft scrambled egg; then it will get thick and start to clog up the beaters (don’t worry; just soldier on). After more egg has been added, the mixture will start to soften so that it comes out of the beaters so it can be beaten more effectively. Stop adding egg when the mixture becomes like cake batter (somewhere between 3 and 4 eggs). 3 eggs will give a thicker mixture with fewer holes; 4 eggs will give a thinner mixture and a finished product with more of the holes characteristic of pate a choux pastries.

Line a baking/cookie sheet with baking parchment (or grease). You can either use two teaspoons (one to scoop, and the other to push the mixture off the other spoon) to form small balls, or scrape the mixture into a piping bag (or freezer bag with the corner snipped off – with a hole length of about 1/2″), and pipe the mixture into thick 5″ long stripes to form the traditional eclair shape.

When you’re ready to cook the  pastries, preheat the oven to 400F.

When hot, place the cookie sheet in the center of the oven, and cook for 15 minutes.

Reduce the temperature to 360F, and cook for a further 15 minutes.

Remove from the oven, and pierce each pastry with a wooden cocktail stick in order to let out the steam.

Allow to cool, then slice, and fill with vegan cream cheese and something sweet, or coat with chocolate.


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