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We don’t eat dessert every day but when I have people over, I like to have a few special occasion dessert recipes to choose from. As much as I love my old standby chocolate chip cookie recipe, it’s nice to do something a little bit more fancy when you have company. I was sent the Keurig 2.0 hot beverage brewing system for review along with coffee and a gift card and asked to create these Popcorn Chouquettes. While they sound very fancy, they really aren’t that difficult to make.
Special Occasion Dessert Recipes: Popcorn Chouquette Cookies
So my first question was “What’s a Chouquette?” What I learned is that it is a type of pastry (French of course) that are sort of like cream puffs. They may or may not be filled with something but they are rolled in something and then baked to give them a crunchy outside. In this case, they are rolled in caramel popcorn and sugar and are not filled. The original recipe that I received included pearl sugar. Since this appears not to exist in rural Vermont, I substituted regular white sugar. My Popcorn Chouquettes did not puff up like cream puffs but instead stayed rather flat more like cookies. I have decided to rename them Popcorn Chouquette Cookies. They are just as yummy this way but, sadly, I am not a French pastry chef.
This recipe is courtesy of Dominique Ansel's new cookbook Dominique Ansel: The Secret recipes and was provided to me by Keurig.
- 1/4 cup popcorn kernels
- 1 tsp vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup + 1 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup loosely packed brown sugar
- 1 tbsp corn syrup
- 1 tbsp water
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 egg & 1 egg yolk, beaten together
- 1/3 cup pearl sugar (or granulated sugar)
Pate a Choux
- 1/3 cup water
- 4 tbsp + 1 tsp whole milk
- 5 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 tsp granulated sugar
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 2/3 cup all purpose flour
- 3 whole eggs
- Make Caramelized Popcorn - Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Combine the popcorn kernels and vegetable oil in a medium pot. Cover with a lid and cook over medium heat until the kernels begin to pop. Vigorously shake the pot to prevent the popcorn from burning. Continue to cook until you no longer hear the kernels popping, about 5 minutes. Spread the popcorn on a sheet pan to cool. Discard any unpopped kernels.
- Combine the granulated sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup and water in another medium pot and bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook without stirring until the caramel reaches 235F (115C) and turns a color similar to honey.
- Add the butter to the pot and slowly swirl to mix. Cook until the caramel reaches 300% (149C) and is about 2 shades darker and the bubbles are much smaller.
- Add the baking soda and salt. Be careful! The baking soda might cause the caramel to splatter. Whisk until completely incorporated.
- Using a heatproof spatula, fold the popcorn into the caramel until it is well coated. Pour the popcorn back onto the sheet pan. Separate the popcorn clusters immediately with the spatula.
- When cooled, about 10 minutes, use a chef's knife to finely chop the popcorn. Store in an airtight container until needed.
Make Pate a choux and chouquettes
- Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375F (190C) or 350F (175C) for convection.
- Combine the water, milk, butter, sugar and salt in a medium pot. Bring to a boil over medium heat.
- Add the flour and stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture comes together and forms a dough. Continue to stir the dough until it begins to dry and you see a film start to form at the bottom of the pot as the result of the dough sticking. 1 or 2 minutes.
- Transfer the dough to a stand mixer fitted with a paddle. If you don't have a mixer, use a heatproof spatula to mix the dough. Add the eggs one at a time and mix on low speed, making sure each egg is full incorporated before adding the next. This may seem difficult at first, but eventually the batter will loosen up.
- Cut the tip of a piping bag to snugly fit a #803 plain tip. using a rubber spatula, place 2 large scoops of choux dough in the bag so that it is one third full. Push the dough down toward the tip of the bag.
- Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Holding the piping bag at a 90 degree angle about 1/2 inch above the pan, pipe dots of choux dough about 1 1/2 inches in diameter, spacing it about 1 inch apart. Continue piping until all the choux dough has been used, refilling the piping bag as necessary.
- Using a pastry brush or the tips of your fingers, lightly brush the egg wash onto the choux. sprinkle the caramelized popcorn over the choux completely covering the surface. Do the same with the pearl sugar. Using your fingers, press thepopcorn and pearl sugar into the choux to ensure that they stick as the choux bake.
- Bake the choux on the center rack for 10 minutes. Rotate the pan 180 degrees and bake for 10 minutes more. When finished, the choux will be golden brown and feel light to the touch. When broken open, the choux should be mostly hollow.
- Let the choux sit on the parchment paper until cool. When cool, remove gently from the parchment with your fingers.
- NOTE: These did not puff up for me so I have decided to call them Popcorn Chouquette Cookies. I am sure it's some failure on my part as a French pastry chef but they are equally delicious this way.
Of course, the best way to enjoy these delicious Popcorn Chouquettes is with a hot cup of coffee. Thanks to my Keurig 2.0, I can now enjoy my coffee by the cup or by the carafe. It used to be that when I had company over, I made everyone a cup of coffee with their own K-cup. While that still worked fine, there were times I really would have preferred to be able to make a pot of coffee instead. Now with the Keurig 2.0, I can make coffee either way and still enjoy the convenience and quality that Keurig offers.
Keurig offers more than 250 different beverages from more than 40 different brands. Just a few brands you’ll find include Starbucks, Dunkin’ Donuts, Snapple, Lipton and Swiss Miss. I’m partial to Green Mountain Coffee myself.
Just a few of the features that the Keurig 2.0 offers:
- Largest (80 oz) water reservoir
- Largest color touch display
- Programmable clock and auto brew
- Hot water on demand
- Customizable night light in water reservoir
- 10 brew sizes (4 oz to 30 oz)
- Bonus: 6 K-Cup Packs, 4 K-Carafe Packs, Water Filter, Starter Kit
So, after using it for a while, I will share my thoughts. I love that I can make both a carafe and a cup. The touch screen is neat and works very well. This definitely appeals to the tech lover in me. Having it programmable and with a customizable night light is another bonus. I like having my coffee ready for me when I first wake up and it’s definitely dark when I wander into the kitchen first thing in the morning. Hot water on demand is a bonus since the kids use it for oatmeal and I use it for loose leaf medicinal teas from the co-op. As someone who wants a serious caffeine kick in the morning, I like that I have the option to click strong on the coffee setting. There is also the option to purchase a separate thermal carafe to keep the coffee warm if you are entertaining.
The Keurig 2.0 uses new technology that scans the top of your K-Cup or K-Carafe. You cannot use any K-Cups that do not have the “Keurig Brewed” logo on the box. It works only with Keurig brand packs which is fine by me because I only by Keurig brand K-Cups. The only thing that I will miss is that I cannot use the Keurig My K-Cup Reusable Coffee Filter that I used with my previous Keurig. I will miss that but understand that it wouldn’t work with the new technology. I hope it’s something that they add into a future version.
If you are a coffee lover, the (affiliate) Keurig 550 2.0 is definitely a must have. It’s perfect when I want just one cup of coffee but I can make a whole carafe for company or first thing in the morning when I know I will want more than one cup. My normal morning requires at least 4 so this works perfectly for me.
Ellen is a busy mom of a 22-year-old son and 27-year-old daughter. She owns 5 blogs and is addicted to social media. She believes that it doesn’t have to be difficult to lead a healthy life. She shares simple healthy living tips to show busy women how to lead fulfilling lives. If you’d like to work together, email email@example.com to chat.