I am half Italian and love my cream puffs, especially filled with custard. I grew up eating them from the historic Italian bakery in San Francisco, Victoria Pastry. Now I can have gluten free cream puffs and so can you. They are so delicious!
You can always fill them with whipped cream or any favorite filling. These gluten free cream puffs are an adaption of the gluten version in “Joy of Cooking”.
My favorite custard is crème brûlfeatée and pastry cream made with cornstarch. Sometimes they’ll turn out much lighter and you’ll need to use whipped cream when they cannot withstand a heavy filling. If you’ve only had gluten free cream puffs filled with whipped cream, you’re in for a real treat if fill them with custard.
This recipe is very easy to make. You can use the drop method for the dough or get fancy and use a pastry bag for a nicer presentation. You may also check out the video below from another site. She’s making gluten cream puffs, but it’s a nice tutorial.
1 cup water, milk or milk substitute (I used water.)
Powdered sugar (optional for top of shell)
Preheat oven to 425°F.
In a small bowl, whisk together the flour blend, sugar and salt; set aside.
In a medium sauce pan add water (or milk) and butter; bring to boil.
Remove from heat and add flour mixture and stir quickly until the dough no longer sticks to the sides of the pan or to the spoon.
Let dough stand in the pan for 2 minutes.
Add dough to mixing bowl and add eggs one at a time and beat each on low speed (no. 2 on a KitchenAid mixer) for about 1 - 2 minutes for each egg or until well blended.
Drop mounds of dough onto a non-stick cookie sheet or use a pastry bag to make them fancier.No need to leave much room between each cream puff, as it will not expand. You may smooth out the peaks that form on the top with a wet finger.
Bake at 425°F for 10 minutes; lower heat to 350°F; bake until they are golden brown and a knife inserted near the bottom, on the side comes out clean, about 50-55 minutes, depending upon size. If you make smaller ones lessen baking times. I made 9 cream puffs. Once baked they were a little over 3" wide.
Remove cream puffs from oven; remove from baking pan and place on a cooling rack until completely cooled and are dried out, overnight is best.
Slice off the top third; remove some of the heavier, moist dough from the tops and bottoms; and fill with your favorite filling. Do not fill until ready to serve; and add tops back on.
Top with powdered sugar (optional).
You can use regular sugar instead of the evaporated cane sugar. I like the evaporated cane sugar because it is not as processed as white sugar.
When inserting the knife to test whether it is fully baked or not ensure that you insert it into a heavy part of the crust, as it usually comes out clean near the top because it is filled with some air due to its flakiness.
If you find that your cream puffs are doughy in the middle there may be several reasons: a) they have not been baked long enough; b) the oven temperature was too low; or c) you opened the oven door during the process.
Another tip I learned from the video below, that is for gluten cream puffs, which may be helpful is to preheat the oven to 475°F; turn the oven off; set the cream puffs in the oven and allow to expand for 10 minutes; without opening the door heat oven to 350°F; bake for 10-15 minutes, depending upon the size of your cream puffs. However, in this gluten free cream puff recipe, additional time is needed, as stated in the above recipe. Bake at 350°F for about 25 minutes.
If using a pastry bag pipe in circles and once you reach the top and begin to withdraw, continue a circular motion to avoid a tip on your pastry.