Emerging as a new trend for 2019, learn how to make your own charcoal profiteroles with a creamy watercress and cream cheese filling.
Preheat the oven to 190°C.
Whisk together the flour and charcoal. Place the salt, water and butter into a large saucepan and bring to a simmer over a medium heat, stirring occasionally. Ensure the butter is fully melted, then remove from the heat and add the flour and charcoal. Beat vigorously until a smooth dough is formed, then return the pan to the heat.
Cook the dough for 3-4 minutes while you use a wooden spoon or spatula to keep it moving round the pan. Stop cooking once the dough is glossy and comes away from the sides of the pan easily.
Transfer the dough to the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment. Beat the dough on high until it has fully cooled. You can use a hand mixer for this but you will be standing in your kitchen for quite a long time while the mix cools down!
Once your dough is cool, add in you beaten eggs, slowly. You may not need to add all of the egg. You are looking for a smooth, pipe-able consistency that will hold its shape once piped or spooned onto a baking tray.
Prepare a flat baking tray with a silicone baking mat, or use greaseproof paper if you do not have a mat to hand.
Pour the choux batter into a piping bag and cut off the end to create a small hole through which to pipe. Pipe circles of batter onto the tray that are roughly 3cm I diameter, making sure you leave at least 5cm gap between each one. Remember that the profiteroles are for canapes so you want them to be bite-size once cooked. If you do not have a piping bag you can spoon the batter onto the tray instead.
Place the tray into your pre-heated oven for 20-25 minutes depending on how crisp you would like your profiteroles to be and how large they are. Personally I like them a tiny bit soft in the middle! It’s very important that you do not open your oven until 20 minutes have elapsed, otherwise you risk your profiteroles collapsing.
Remove the profiteroles from the oven and allow to cool completely while you make your filling. Finely chop your watercress, stalks and all, and add into a mixing bowl. Add in your cream cheese, lemon zest, and horseradish, and mix thoroughly. You may want to add a little more horseradish depending on your taste.
Once your profiteroles have cooled, take a small serrated knife and carefully cut them in half crossways. Spoon your filling into a piping bag and fill the bottom half of each profiterole with the cheese and watercress mixture before placing the lid on top. Serve immediately.
Tip: Once your profiteroles have cooled they can be kept in an air-tight container for 24 hours before filling and serving.