Beer Profiteroles with Chocolate-Beer Sauce
If this recipe seems a bit intimidating, crack open a cold one before tackling the first step. The end results—scoops of beer ice cream nestled in pastry puffs and dripping with beer-infused chocolate sauce—are well worth it. If you’re short on time, substitute store-bought coffee or vanilla ice cream for homemade. Or, for a dessert Homer Simpson would love, use purchased donut holes in place of the puff pastry. The ice cream can be made up to five days ahead, and the profiteroles will keep well for a day or two stored in an airtight container. —Lucy Baker
Makes 6 servings
For the beer ice cream:
2 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 1/2 cups milk
5 large egg yolks
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup (8 ounces) chocolate stout, or other dark beer
For the profiteroles:
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup whole milk
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 large eggs
For the chocolate beer sauce:
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons chocolate stout
To make the beer ice cream: Combine the heavy cream and milk in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is barely simmering (you will see steam rising from the surface, and small bubbles at the edge of the pan). Remove the pan from the heat and set aside.
In a medium mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar and salt until thick and pale yellow. Very slowly whisk 1/4 cup of the hot cream mixture into the egg mixture to temper it. Then transfer the egg mixture to the saucepan with the rest of the cream mixture and return to medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, for 3 to 6 minutes, or until the mixture has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon without running.
Remove the saucepan from the heat and strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve. Add the vanilla extract and stout. Chill for at least 4 hours or preferably overnight and freeze in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
To make the profiteroles: Preheat the oven to 425ºF and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Combine 1/2 cup water, milk, butter, and salt in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low, add the flour, and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the mixture forms a ball and pulls away from the sides of the pan. Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl and allow it to cool slightly. Using an electric mixer, beat in the eggs, one at a time.
Spoon the mixture into a large, zip-top plastic bag and snip off one of the corners. Squeeze 12 mounds of dough onto the baking sheet, spacing them an inch or two apart. Bake until puffed and golden, about 22 minutes. Turn off the oven, set the door slightly ajar, and allow the profiteroles to rest for another 5 minutes.
Remove the profiteroles from the oven and prick each one with a toothpick to allow steam to escape. Let them cool completely on a wire rack.
To make the chocolate-beer sauce: Place the chocolate in a medium bowl. Combine the cream and sugar in a small saucepan and heat over medium-low heat until just barely simmering. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and stir until the chocolate melts. Stir in the stout.
To assemble the dessert, cut each profiterole in half crosswise. Place a scoop of ice cream on the bottom half of the profiterole and sandwich with the top. Drizzle generously with the chocolate-beer sauce and serve.
Shake It Up: Substitute another richly flavored beer, such as India Pale Ale, for the stout.