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Nun Puffs
Dominique Crenn makes nun puffs for dessert
Nathan Congleton / TODAY
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(4 rated)

Chef Dominique Crenn, World's Best Female Chef 2016, fills delicate cream puffs with ethereal coffee cream for an out of this world dessert.


  • Chocolate Glaze

    • 1 cup (240 g) water
    • 3/4 cup (175 g) sugar
    • 5/8 cup (70 g) cocoa powder
    • 2/3 cup (150 g) heavy cream
    • 2½ teaspoons (8 g) gelatin
    • Salt
  • Craquelin

    • 1½ cup (180 g) all-purpose flour
    • 1 cup (180 g) brown sugar
    • 2/3 cup (150 g) butter
    • Salt
  • Pate a Choux

    • 1¼ cup (320 g) water
    • 2/3 cup (150 g) butter
    • 1/8 cup (5 g) sugar
    • 1/4 tablespoon (5 g) salt
    • 1½ cups (180 g) bread flour
    • 1/4 cup (28 g) milk powder
    • 7 (320 g) eggs
  • Coffee Cream

    • 1 quart whole milk
    • 3 ounces whole coffee beans
    • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) sugar
    • 2/5 cup (2 ounces) cornstarch
    • 1½ tablespoons (1/4 ounce) salt
    • 4 eggs
    • 6 sheets gelatin
    • 1½ cups (12 ounces) heavy cream


For the Chocolate Glaze:

  1. Combine the water and sugar into a sauce pot and bring to a boil.
  2.  Whisk in the cocoa powder and bring back to a boil.
  3.  Whisk in the heavy cream and bring back to a boil.
  4.  Reduce the mixture by half.
  5.  Add the gelatin.
  6.  Line a sheet tray with acetate and pour the glaze over the acetate into a thin sheet.
  7.  Freeze
  8.  Punch out rounds to top the Nun Puffs.

For the Craquelin:

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a stand mixer affixed with a paddle attachment.
  2. Mix until the dough forms.
  3. Roll into a 1/16-inch thick sheet.
  4. Punch out the rounds to place on top of the Pate a Choux.

For the Pate a Choux:

  1. Combine the water, butter, sugar and salt in a sauce pot and bring just to a boil
  2. Stir in the flour.
  3. Continue to cook over medium heat for 1-2 minutes until the dough becomes smooth.
  4. Transfer the mixture into a stand mixer affixed with a paddle attachment.
  5. Paddle in the eggs, one at a time, until completely incorporated.
  6. Pipe into quarter size rounds on a silpat
  7. Top with craquelin
  8. Bake at 400 degrees F for about 30 minutes

For the Coffee Cream:

  1. Scald the milk in a sauce pot, then steep the coffee beans in the milk for 30 minutes.
  2. Whisk the sugar, cornstarch and salt in a bowl
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs.
  4. Temper the eggs with the hot milk and coffee beans, then place back over medium heat.
  5. Stirring constantly with a whisk, bring the mixture to a soft boil.
  6. Once the desired consistency is reached, strain the liquid into a clean bowl.
  7. Bloom the gelatin in cold water and add to the hot custard.
  8. Chill for 1 hour.
  9. Place into a piping bag to fill the Nun Puffs.

Related video

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Meet Dominique Crenn, the newly crowned 'World's Best Female Chef'

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