Monday, June 17, 2013

Slim Cream Puff Recipe

And now, for a delicious, low-sugar, low-calorie, healthy cream puff recipe I adapted from Better Homes & Garden's Family Favorites Made Lighter. These little buggers may not live up to the grandeur of the famous Wisconsin State Fair Cream Puffs, but they'll satiate your sweet tooth without being overly sugary. This recipe is only for the actual cream puff pastry; You can fill the shells with sugar-free puddings, Cool Whip Free, or a homemade Slim Chocolate Pudding. I tried filling these puffy puffs with all three, since I had them all on hand, but I bet you could use Fat Free Reddi Whip for a more State-Fair like filling as well! This recipe isn't difficult and doesn't require a lot of experience- It's fun to prepare on a lazy summer day, like I did!

  • Nonstick spray coating
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup unsalted margarine (I used light butter)
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 eggs
  • Slim Chocolate Pudding, Sugar Free Pudding of choice, or Cool Whip Free
  • Powdered Sugar or Granulated Splenda (optional)

Spray a baking sheet with nonstick coating; set baking sheet aside.
In a medium saucepan combine the water, margarine or light butter, and salt. Bring to boiling. Add flour all at once, stirring vigorously. Cook and stir till mixture forms a ball that does not separate. Remove from the heat. Cool for 10 minutes. Add the egg whites and eggs, one at a time, beating with a wooden spoon after each addition till smooth. Drop batter by heaping tablespoons, 3 inches apart, onto the prepared baking sheet, making 10 mounds.
Bake in a 400 degree oven for 30 to 35 minutes or till golden. Cool the cream puffs on a wire rack. Split the cream puffs and remove any soft dough from inside. Just before serving, fill each cream puff with Slim Chocolate Pudding, Sugar-Free Pudding, or Cool Whip Free. Replace tops. If desired, lightly sift powdered sugar or granulated Splenda over top. Makes ten servings.

Per serving: 164 calories, 6g of protein, 21g of carbohydrates, .5g of dietary fiber, 7g of total fat, 1g of saturated fat, 44mg of cholesterol, 90mg of sodium, 212mg of potassium, 15% of Vitamin A, 1% of Vitamin C, 12% of Thiamine, 18% of Riboflavin, 6% of Niacin, 10% of Calcium, and 9% of Iron.

So, after spraying the baking sheet with some cooking spray, we must first combine the water, margarine (or light butter, in my case), and salt in a medium saucepan. We're gonna want to bring that to a boiling.
Then, you're gonna want to add all of your flour, stirring vigorously until it forms a ball. Even if your hand gets tired, don't stop stirring: You don't want the batter to burn!
You know your good to go when you got a dough ball like pictured above! It's fun to roll around in the pan... Roly-Poly! Take the pan off the heat and let the dough cool for ten minutes before moving on.
Next, you're going to want to add the eggs and egg whites, one at a time, making sure the mixture is smooth after each addition. Trust me, you gotta get it smooth before you add the next egg: I didn't and it was a TOTAL PAIN stirring the whole thing smooth. It took forever! My arms got so tired... Good workout for the day!
Too lumpy!
Phew... Breaking those dough lumps down... To get the lumps smoother, you could always mash them up against the sides and bottom of the pan as you stir.
Great! We've finally achieved a batter-like consistency! Time to form the cream puffs!
Wait a minute... This recipe makes ten servings... And I made fifteen. Aw man, I need to go back to school... Not even a full week into vacation and I'm becoming un-smart all of the suddenly. Anyway, after dropping the batter into rounds on the baking sheet, you may want to form them into a more circular shape with your hands.
Time to bake! Put these babies in for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown.
Ah, they look ready! And they smell great!
After taking the cream puffs out of the oven, place them on a wire rack so they can cool off all around.
After they have cooled completely, slice the cream puffs open horizontally and remove all of the soft, sticky dough on the inside. I would suggest using a clean pair of hands to pick out the dough. I tried using a metal spoon at first, but that can prove unwieldy as the pastries are very, very delicate and break too easily when using a spoon.
Look at all that excess dough... It's all gooey and sticky. It retains it shape, like memory foam or something. Taking all this stuff out of the shells reminded me of gutting a pumpkin!
Now it's time to fill the cream puffs! First, I used my homemade Slim Chocolate Pudding. The recipe didn't yield too much pudding though, so I only was able to fill up three pastries.
Then, I made up a package of Jell-O Sugar Free Vanilla Pudding to fill up the remainder of the cream puffs. I ran out of that too...
Thankfully, I had some Cool Whip Free hiding in the freezer that I could use to complete my cream puff endeavor. I had to defrost it in the microwave, which the package says exactly NOT to do, but drastic situations call for drastic measures! The Cool Whip came out a bit liquidy, but whatever! I was putting the cream puffs back in the freezer anyway so they wouldn't become soggy from their various fillings right away.
And that's all you need to do for scrumptious, healthy cream puffs! You can also sprinkle the tops with powdered sugar or granulated Splenda for an extra-sweet kick! I hope you enjoy making this recipe as much as I did!
Till' next time, this has been RiRi Ri-porting!

You can find even more healthy recipes in Better Homes & Garden's Family Favorites Made Lighter! You can purchase the book pretty much anywhere online- You know... Amazon, Ebay...sites like that. There are actually a lot of decent recipes in there... I would recommend giving the book a try.

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