Mini Paris Brest with Orange Crème Diplomat Recipe. History has it that the Paris Brest was created in 1910 by Louis Duran to commemorate the Paris-Brest-Paris bicycle race. A classic choux bun baked in the form of a ring is traditionally filled with a hazelnut crème but I decided to go with the seasons for this one and swap out the hazelnuts for a delicate orange flavoured crème diplomat – simple, classic dessert that is perfect for the summer
For the Crème diplomat
– 175ml full fat milk
– 1 whole egg
– 1 egg yolk
– 100g caster sugar
– 35g corn flour
– 50g unsalted butter
– 50ml double cream
– Zest of 1 large orange
– 2 tsp orange liqueur (optional)
For the choux pastry
– 220ml water
– 85g unsalted butter
– 3 whole eggs
– 105g plain flour
– Pinch of salt
For the crème diplomat
1. Pour the milk into a medium sized heavy saucepan and heat under a medium/high heat.
2. While waiting to come to the boil, in a large mixing bowl add the egg, egg yolk and sugar and
whisk well until fully combined.
3. Mix in the cornflour and whisk until there are no lumps remaining.
4. Once the milk is boiling take it off the heat and pour it in a slow, steady stream into the eggs and sugar while constantly whisking to ensure the eggs don’t cook!
5. Once all the milk is added, return the mixture to the saucepan and cook under a medium heat and stir constantly.
6. It can feel like nothing is happening for ages but all of a sudden it will thicken – just keep stirring and don’t be tempted to turn the heat up too much or you’ll end up with scrambled eggs!
7. Once the custard has thickened, remove from the heat.
8. In a separate bowl, whisk the double cream until thick and holding shape. Add this to the custard along with the zest of the orange and the orange liqueur if using.
9. Pour into a flat tray/dish and cover with clingfilm. Ensure the clingfilm is actually sitting on the surface of the crème diplomat as this prevents a skin forming on your crème diplomat.
For the pastry
1. Preheat the oven to 180oC and line a large baking sheet with greaseproof paper or a reusable liner.
2. Cut the butter into small cubes.
3. Sieve the flour on to a sheet of greaseproof paper or reuseable baking tray liner.
4. Place the water and butter into a heavy based, medium saucepan and bring to the boil.
5. Remove from the heat and tip all of the flour in in one go. Return to a low heat and using a
wooden spoon stir vigorously until the mixture is no longer sticking to the sides or bottom of the pan.
6. Add one egg at a time, and using the wooden spoon stir well to ensure the egg is fully incorporated. This can take a bit of energy but it’s worth it! Some people carry out this step in a food processor but I prefer doing it by hand as you get a better feel for the texture of the pastry. Repeat with the other two eggs.
7. Once all the eggs have been added the pastry should be smooth, shiny and of dropping
8. Place a large star piping tip into a piping bag and fill the piping bag with the pastry.
9. Pipe 8 thick rings, approximately 2-2.5 inches diameter onto the baking sheet and sprinkle with
10. Bake for 20-25 mins until crisp and golden.
11. Leave in the oven but leave the door open and let cool. After 15/20 mins remove from the oven and leave to cool completely.
12. Once cool, using a sharp serrated knife slit the buns carefully through the half.
1. Remove the crème diplomat from the fridge. Place a large star piping nozzle into a piping bag and fill with the crème diplomat.
2. Fill the choux rings with the mixture by piping onto the bottom of the rings before adding the tops.
3. Sprinkle with a few more flaked almonds and dust with icing sugar if desired before serving.
After years of baking at home and cultivating her creativity & skill, Imelda first came to the public’s attention as she launched on to our screens in the 2018 series of The Great British Bake Off & Channel 4s The Extra Slice. After beating competition from thousands of other aspiring amateur bakers Imelda appeared as one of the 12 contestants taking on the infamous Bake Off tent. Although she met an early exit, Imelda’s warmth and wit ensured she was an immediate hit with the show’s dedicated fan base. Originally from rural Co. Tyrone, when not in the kitchen baking Imelda can be found outdoors exploring; she also loves to go off the beaten track to discover new food producers and eateries. With a strong passion for local produce and home grown food, Imelda is always on the look-out for new artisan producers to work with to create new culinary combinations!
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