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Saturday, October 1, 2016

Recipe: Candy Corn Cream Horns

Stack of Honey Cream Filled Candy Corn Cream Horns

Recipe: Candy Corn Cream Horns



Would a "Cream Horn" by any other name taste as sweetly?

"Trubochki" in Russian. "Torpil" in Turkish. I feel as though the English-speaking world failed in this name game. "Cream Horn" is far from appetite-inducing. But there's nothing not to like about these simple but extremely satisfying pastries.

Cone-shaped spirals of Pastry Dough filled with sweetened Whipped Cream, Cream Horns were The Great British Bake Off's penultimate signature challenge featured in Episode 8: Pâtisserie.

Like Tarts, Cream Horns are a "blank canvas" pastry. It's a basic theme that is perfect for infinite variations. While a sweetened Whipped Cream filling may be traditional (and undeniably delicious in its simplicity), you need not stop there. Even this Halloween spin, which involves a Honey sweetened Whipped Cream and Candy Corn, is rather basic. Fruit, Nuts, Chocolate, Custard, Cheese... if you can put it in your mouth, you can use it here!

Close Up of Stack of Honey Cream Filled Candy Corn Cream Horns
Pick your Pastry! When if comes to Cream Horns, you can use Puff PastryPâte Brisée (Flakey Pastry Dough) or even Snickerdoodle Sour Cream Pastry Dough.

Sometimes the Pastry Dough selected for a dessert is a secondary consideration. After all, isn't it just a vehicle for a much tastier filling? Historically, that may have been the case. Oh, what it must have been like to live in the age of Henry VIII, when a successful Pastry Dough was more a consideration of architecture over edibility!

In this instance, and in my opinion, the Pastry Dough is the star of the dessert. That said, Puff Pastry is far and away my recommendation. When it is baked with a light dusting of Powdered Sugar, Puff Pastry is a treat on its own. Pâte Brisée simply can't compare. Puff Pastry is a fast and sexy sports car. Pâte Brisée is the old family station wagon.

Field of Candy Corn
As it's Halloween (okay, so Halloween is still a month away, but we're getting close), this recipe is a nod to one of the most iconic candies of the season: Candy Corn!

Candy Corn is a polarizing treat. People seem to either love it or hate it. Reduced to its ingredients, Candy Corn is a simple confection where Honey is the dominant flavor. Paired with a Honey sweetened Whipped Cream, it is an easy and effective riff for a Cream Horn.


Cream Horn Molds
Specially designed molds are an inexpensive must-have when making Cream Horns.

These metal, cone-shaped molds are the structural base for the Pastry Dough. Some molds are made from non-stick metal - the easiest option. Others should be lightly sprayed with non-stick spray before using.


Laminating Dough for Puff Pastry
Begin by preparing the Pastry Dough of your choice (i.e. Puff Pastry or Pâte Brisée). One recipe is enough Pastry Dough to make 12 Cream Horns.

For the best final product, it is important to allow the Pastry Dough to rest and chill according to the recipe, so consider making the Pastry Dough the day before.

Once rested and chilled, roll the Pastry Dough to at least 9" x 15" and approximately 3/8" thickness. Using a sharp knife, cut the sheet of Pastry Dough into 12 strips measuring 3/4" wide and 15" long.

While working, the Pastry Dough should be kept as cold as possible. If it begins to feel soft, return the Pastry Dough to the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes. This will make it easier to handle. It will also make for a flakier final product. Puff Pastry, with layers of Butter delicately rolled and folded between layers of Dough, is particularly sensitive to prolonged exposure in the heat of the kitchen.

Cream Horn Molds Wrapped in Puff Pastry
Working one at a time, remove a strip of Pastry Dough from the refrigerator. Starting from the tip of the Cream Horn mold, wrap the strip of Pastry Dough in an overlapping spiral around the Cream Horn mold. The overlapping portion should be as thin as possible while also ensuring there are no gaps. If the overlapping sections are too wide, the Cream Horns will be too thick.

As you wrap the Pastry Dough, gently press the overlapping sections to seal the seams. When you reach the end of the strip of Pastry Dough, press or tuck the tail to seal the end.

Immediately place the wrapped Cream Horn mold back into the refrigerator. Repeat the process for all of the strips of Pastry Dough.

When all of the Cream Horn molds have been wrapped and chilled, remove the molds from the refrigerator and brush them with a light coating of Egg Wash. Lightly dust the Cream Horns with Powdered Sugar.

Close Up of Back Puff Pastry for Cream Horns
Place the Cream Horns seam side down on a parchment lined sheet tray and bake them at 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 degrees Celsius) for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, rotate the sheet tray to ensure even baking. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (177 degrees Celsius). Continue to bake the Cream Horns until they are done - approximately 10-15 minutes.

The Pastry Dough is properly baked when it is golden brown in color and fully dry (particularly the bottom of the Cream Horn that is in contact with the sheet tray).

Stack of Unfilled Puff Pastry Cream Horns
Remove the sheet tray from the oven. As soon as the Cream Horns are cool enough to touch, remove the mold. Allow the Cream Horns to cool on a wire cooling rack.

Immediately removing the molds from the center of the Cream Horns allows moisture to escape from the inside of the baked Pastry Dough. This prevents any steam from making the Pastry Dough Soft.

Tray of Chocolate Dipped Puff Pastry Cream Horns
As the Cream Horns cool, gently melt and temper the White Chocolate in a double boiler. When the they have cooled completely, dip the open end of each Cream Horn in the White Chocolate.

Allow any excess White Chocolate to drip from the Cream Horn and then place it on a wire cooling rack over a parchment lined sheet tray. As the White Chocolate is setting, move the Cream Horn to prevent a "foot" from forming.

Honey Cream Filled Cream Horns
As the White Chocolate sets, whip the Cream and Honey to medium/firm peaks. Transfer the Honey Whipped Cream to a pastry bag fitted with a #3 star tip.

Place several Candy Corns in the bottom of each Cream Horn.

Fill each Cream Horn with the Honey Whipped Cream, making a rosette with the Whipped Cream at the mouth of each Cream Horn. Place an additional Candy Corn at the center of each Whipped Cream rosette.

Close Up of Honey Cream Filled Cream Horns
Serve the Cream Horns immediately or store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Filled Cream Horns must be served the day they are made. Fill the Cream Horns as close to serving as possible. If you are not serving the Cream Horns immediately after they are filled, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Unfilled Cream Horns can be kept for 2-3 days at room temperature in an airtight container.





- The Recipe -




Candy Corn Cream Horns:


Yield12 Cream Horns 

Ingredients:


  • White Chocolate, tempered: 180g (6 oz) 

  • Cream: 240g (1 Cup)
  • Honey: 30g (2 Tbls)


  • Candy Corn


Directions:

1. Prepare the Pastry Dough of choice (i.e. Puff Pastry or Pâte Brisée). Allow it to rest and chill according to the specific recipe.

2. Roll the Pastry Dough to at least 9" x 15" and approximately 3/8" thickness. Using a sharp knife, cut the sheet of Pastry Dough into 12 strips measuring 3/4" wide and 15" long.

Chef's Note: The Pastry Dough should be kept as cold as possible while working. Return the Pastry Dough to the refrigerator for 10 - 15 minutes if it begins to feel soft. This will make it easier to work with the Pastry Dough. It will also make for a flakier final product.

3. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 degrees Celsius). If required, lightly spray the Cream Horn molds with non-stick spray.

Chef's Note: Some Cream Horn molds are made from non-stick material and do no require the use of non-stick spray. Use a very light amount of non-stick spray or the Pastry Dough may be difficult to wrap around the Cream Horn mold.

4. Working one at a time, remove a strip of Pastry Dough from the refrigerator. Starting from the tip of the Cream Horn mold, wrap the strip of Pastry Dough in an overlapping spiral around the Cream Horn mold. The overlapping portion should be as thin as possible while also ensuring there are no gaps. If the overlapping sections are too wide, the Cream Horns will be too thick. As you wrap the Pastry Dough, gently press the overlapping sections to seal the seams. When you reach the end of the strip of Pastry Dough, press or tuck the tail to seal the end. Immediately place the wrapped Cream Horn mold back into the refrigerator. Repeat the process for all of the strips of Pastry Dough.

5. When all of the Cream Horn molds have been wrapped and chilled, remove the molds from the refrigerator and brush them with a light coating of Egg Wash. Lightly dust the Cream Horns with Powdered Sugar.

6. Place the Cream Horns seam side down on a parchment lined sheet tray and bake them at 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 degrees Celsius) for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, rotate the sheet tray to ensure even baking. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (177 degrees Celsius). Continue to bake the Cream Horns until done - approximately 10 - 15 minutes. The Pastry Dough is properly baked when it is golden brown in color and fully dry (particularly the bottom of the Cream Horn that is in contact with the sheet tray).

7. Remove the sheet tray from the oven. As soon as the Cream Horns are cool enough to touch, remove the mold. Allow the Cream Horns to cool on a wire cooling rack.

Chef's Note: Removing the molds from the center of the Cream Horns allows moisture to escape from the inside of the baked Pastry Dough. This prevents the steam from making the Pastry Dough soft.

8. As the Cream Horns cool, gently melt and temper the White Chocolate in a double boiler. When the Cream Horns have cooled completely, dip the open end of each Cream Horn in the White Chocolate. Allow any excess White Chocolate to drip from the Cream Horn and then place it on a wire cooling rack over a parchment lined sheet tray. As the White Chocolate is setting, move the Cream Horn to prevent a "foot" from forming.

9. As the White Chocolate sets, whip the Cream and Honey to medium/firm peaks. Transfer the Honey Whipped Cream to a pastry bag fitted with a #3 star tip. Place several Candy Corns in the bottom of each Cream Horn. Fill each Cream Horn with the Honey Whipped Cream, making a rosette with the Whipped Cream at the mouth of each Cream Horn. Place an additional Candy Corn at the center of each Whipped Cream rosette. 

10. Serve the Cream Horns immediately or store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Storage:
- Filled Cream Horns must be served the day they are made. Fill the Cream Horns as close to serving as possible. If you are not serving the Cream Horns immediately after they are filled, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- Unfilled Cream Horns can be kept for 2-3 days at room temperature in an airtight container.

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