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Choux Swans

  • 30 minutes
  • 30-35 minutes
  • Makes 10-12 swans
Choux Swans

I made these delightful "Swans" for Jean-Luc's first birthday party. They are far easier to make than they look.


  • ½ cup flour
  • pinch salt
  • ½ cup water
  • 50 grams butter
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 300 ml bottle cream
  • 2 tablespoons icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or lemon essence


  1. Sift the flour and salt on to a plate and have close to the stove.
  2. Cut the butter into small pieces and place into a saucepan with the water. Bring to the boil, ensuring that the butter has all melted before the water boils. If the water continues to boil until the butter has melted, you will get too much evaporation and there will not be sufficient liquid left when you add the flour.
  3. Tip in all the sifted flour at once and draw off the heat. Beat quickly with a wooden spoon. The mixture should come away from the sides of the saucepan and form a ball. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the half the beaten eggs and beat well with a wooden spoon until the mixture is well incorporated. Add the remaining egg mixture and continue to beat until the mixture is thick and glossy. Alternatively you can put the dough paste into a food processor and add the eggs in the food processor.
  5. Fill most of the mixture into a piping bag with a 2cm wide nozzle. Pipe 10-12 large tear-drops of dough onto a well-greased and flour-dusted baking tray. Put the remaining mixture into a piping bag with a small nozzle and pipe 10-12 question marks, these will be the swans necks. (If wished brush the choux pastry with egg glaze.)
  6. Bake at 220°C or at fan bake 200°C for 20 minutes. Lower the temperature to 140 (120°C fan bake) for a further 10 -15 minutes until the puffs are dry. Take the puffs from the oven and pierce with the end of a spoon to allow the steam to escape, otherwise they will soften and collapse.
  7. Slice the top off the choux and then cut this ?lid? in half. These are the swans wings. Fill the choux with sweetened whipped cream, place wings into the cream and insert the (question-mark) neck into the cream between the wings. Sprinkle with icing sugar.
  8. Serve soon after filling with the cream.

Cooks Tips

Variations - Strawberry swans: Slice ½ punnet strawberries finely and toss with 1 tablespoon of orange liqueur or icing sugar. Divide these evenly among the base of the swans before topping with cream. - Chocolate swans: Melt 100 grams dark chocolate and brush the base and internal sides of the swan bodies with the chocolate. Allow to set before filling with cream. - Chocolate eclairs: Place the choux mixture into a piping bag fitted with a large 2cm wide nozzle. Pipe 12-14 x 5cm lengths onto the prepared trays. Alternatively, pipe the mixture into well-greased chocolate eclair moulds. Cook as specified for the swan bodies. Once cold, cut in half horizontally and fill with whipped cream. Spread with rich chocolate cream or melted chocolate.

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