Hazelnut Pastry Cream
Hazelnut Pastry Cream:
  • 2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1½ cups half and half
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 3 Tablespoons butter, cut into 3 pieces, chilled
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ Tablespoon hazelnut liqueur, optional
  • 1 cup heavy cream, chilled
  • 1-2 Tablespoons powdered sugar
Hazelnut Praline:
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 cup hazelnuts, toasted and skin removed
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon oil
Pastry Cream
  1. Sprinkle the gelatin over the water and set aside until the gelatin softens.
  2. In a small saucepan, bring the half and half to a simmer. Do not boil.
  3. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk the yolks and sugar until smooth.
  4. Add the flour and whisk until smooth.
  5. When the half and half is just barely simmering, slowly pour a ladle of the hot liquid into the bowl, while you are whisking at the same time. This is called tempering and means that you are slowly heating up the egg mixture to make sure that the eggs don't scramble. Whisk in another ladle of hot liquid and then return everything to the same saucepan and cook on medium or low heat until the mixture thickens and you see big bubbles bursting on the surface. Remove from the heat.
  6. Add the butter, softened gelatin and the vanilla extract. Whisk until smooth.
  7. Strain the pastry cream through a fine mesh sieve to remove any lumps. Place some parchment paper right on top of the pastry cream, which will prevent a skin from forming on top. Chill in the refrigerator for about 45 minutes.
Hazelnut Praline:
  1. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray.
  2. In a small saucepan, bring the water and sugar to a boil, stirring a few times so that the sugar dissolves.
  3. Decrease the heat to medium low and continue cooking without stirring for 8-15 minutes, until the syrup is golden brown.
  4. Take off the heat immediately and add the hazelnuts. Mix very quickly and pour it out onto the prepared baking sheet, smoothing it out so the hazelnuts are in one layer. Cool for 30 minutes.
  5. Break the cooled praline into small pieces and place them into a food processor. Pulse until finely ground. Add the salt and the oil and mix until combined into a paste.
  1. When the pastry cream has chilled, add the hazelnut praline paste and fold to combine. Add the hazelnut liqueur.
  2. Meanwhile, in a standing mixer with a whisk attachment (I usually chill the bowl and the whisk attachment in the freezer for 10 minutes first) whip the heavy cream with the powdered sugar until soft peaks form. Fold in the whipped cream into the pastry cream gently.
  3. You can make this pastry cream in advance and store it in the refrigerator.
Recipe by Olga's Flavor Factory at https://www.olgasflavorfactory.com/recipes/favorites/cream-puffs/