something new to the Easter brunch table with savory
eclairs filled with scrambled eggs and a selection of
love brunch, but we love it even more in the spring, when
sunlight flickers through the early buds and life vibrates
with fresh starts.
any morning that could use a boost, savory éclairs offer a
delicious variation on the usual toast or English muffins.
The eggy boats are welcoming vessels for creamy scrambled
eggs, topped with spring’s first asparagus, wound like a
maypole with crisp bacon.
one idea. You’re likely to have others. After all, the
essential goodness of an éclair is the combination of the
interior’s tender egginess and the delicate crunch of its
outer shell. It’s a perfect backdrop for classic scrambled
eggs. How you dress them up after that is where creativity
lies and why homemade is so much more rewarding and fun.
can be made up to two days ahead. The final assembly is a
last-minute affair, but one that’s hardly more difficult
than stirring eggs in a pan.
resulting dish will be greeted with delight, bringing a food
that we’ve long listed on the dessert menu to the main
a fresh start for éclairs, and for the day.
WITH BACON-WRAPPED ASPARAGUS
Éclairs may be made a day ahead and stored in an airtight
container at room temperature for up to two days. For a
welcome accompaniment, prepare as many extra bacon-wrapped
asparagus spears as desired and serve alongside. Lean
center-cut bacon is best for this recipe. From Kim Ode.
tablespoons unsalted butter, cut in small pieces
slices thin-sliced, center-cut, bacon
asparagus spears, 1/2- to 3/4-inch thick, trimmed to 6 to 7
tablespoons boursin cheese or onion-garlic cream cheese
tablespoon unsalted butter
make the éclairs: Preheat oven to 450 degrees. If you have
a baking or pizza stone, place that on the lowest rack. (It
will help make the pastries puff.)
eggs in a bowl of hot tap water.
medium saucepan, combine 1 cup water, 4 tablespoons butter
and salt and bring to a full boil. Remove from heat, then
add flour all at once, stirring vigorously with a wooden
spoon to form a ball.
the pan to medium heat and continue stirring, pressing the
dough against the side of the pan and gathering it up into a
ball, for about 2 minutes. This dries out the dough so that
it can better absorb the eggs. Stir constantly to keep dough
from scorching, although a sheen will form on the bottom of
dough in bowl of stand mixer and set aside for 5 minutes to
the mixer on low, gradually add 3 of the warmed eggs, one at
a time, waiting until each egg is absorbed before adding the
next one. Separate the fourth egg and add the egg white
only. (Save the yolk for the scrambled eggs, or discard.)
mixer speed to medium until eggs are thoroughly incorporated
and dough is smooth and satiny, about 1 minute.
make by hand, use a wooden spoon to thoroughly beat each egg
into the dough until the right consistency is reached. This
will take a little elbow grease, but the end result is the
the mixture to a pastry bag fitted with a large cone tip.
(No bag? Use a heavy-duty plastic bag and snip a 3/4-inch
tip from 1 corner.) On a baking sheet covered with parchment
paper or coated with cooking spray, pipe 8 (5-inch) éclair
shapes of dough, about 1 inch wide, at least 2 inches apart.
a plant spritzer, lightly spray each éclair once with
water. This will keep them moist so they’ll swell as much
as possible before firming up.
baking sheet directly on the pizza stone or on bottom rack.
Reduce oven temperature to 425 degrees. Bake 15 minutes.
Reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for another 15 minutes.
Do not open the oven door, or the puffs may collapse. After
30 minutes total baking time, remove pan from oven and
pierce each éclair with a small knife to allow any steam to
escape and to help them bake dry. Return to oven to bake for
10 minutes. Remove to a wire rack to cool.
assemble the éclairs: Slice each strip of bacon down the
middle lengthwise so you have eight long strips. Wrap strips
around asparagus spears in a spiral pattern and place on a
baking sheet lined with parchment paper, leaving at least an
inch between them.
pan on an oven rack positioned in the top third of the oven.
Turn on oven to 400 degrees. (Bacon will hold its shape
better if it starts cooking from a cold oven.) Bake for 10
minutes, then turn them and continue baking 10 to 15 minutes
or until the bacon is crisp.
off oven and move asparagus to a lower rack.
thin slice along the top of each éclair to reveal the
interior. Spread 1 tablespoon of the flavored cheese inside
each éclair, then arrange them on a baking sheet and place
in the still-warm oven.
nonstick frying pan, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium
heat. In a bowl, whisk the 8 eggs (and extra yolk, if
using), then pour into the pan. Turn the heat to low and,
with a wooden or heatproof spatula, begin stirring the eggs,
keeping them in motion as cooked curds begin to form. Keep
stirring until egg mixture looks fluffy and just shy of
fully cooked. Remove pan from heat. (Eggs will continue
cooking. Do not overcook.)
éclairs on individual plates or on a serving platter.
Divide scrambled eggs among them, then top with an asparagus
spear. Serve immediately.
information per filled éclair: 310 calories, 23 g fat, 380
mg sodium, 14 g carbohydrates, 11 g saturated fat, 2 g total
sugars, 13 g protein, 320 mg cholesterol, 1 g dietary fiber
per serving: 1 starch, 1 1/2 medium-fat protein, 3 fat