Coconut Eclairs, Gluten Free

Coconut Eclairs, gluten free. Coconut pudding, chocolate ganache.

Recently I asked someone what you get when you mix petit choux, coconut and chocolate together and they just yelled out “next” while politely handing me a cup of coffee that was mostly still scalding.  Apparently testing out recipe ideas on an unsuspecting Barista in the early morning is not the best idea. And just in case she’s reading this, it turned out splendidly, thank you.

If you are a fan of coconut, eclairs and chocolate, this will probably seem like a winner. Don’t be daunted by having to make choux dough – it is simple, easy and forgiving if you mix in each egg thoroughly before adding the next. And when you bake them, don’t open the door until they are fully cooked, no matter how tempting.  Don’t be disappointed if they seem to be flat while baking. The last few minutes is when they gain that puff and start to brown, slightly. Coconut milk choux dough will not get brown.

If you need choux 101 here is another post with tons of information – just don’t add the cheese. And this recipe uses coconut milk rather than regular milk in the choux dough, and in the pudding, and for the ganache.

Shape them into eclairs or a petit choux, which ever makes you happy. I like to do both. Piping is easiest for eclairs and you want them only about 3-4 inches long because they puff up like the incredible hulk, but without the pesky green.

For choux puffs, you can pipe or just dollop a blob onto the parchment with a scoop or two spoons making it round and tall which will give it a head start on forming into a tall puff-ball.

For a quick and easy way to fill them with pudding, slice off the top, like a cap and replace it at a jaunty angle and then swish some warm-ish ganache over the top. No need to pipe in the filling unless you love piping.

Around here we call a platter of eclairs the start of a really great weekend.

Coconut Petit Choux, gluten free. Coconut pudding, chocolate ganache.

Please note: Canteen flour blend is 2 parts superfine brown rice flour plus one part each superfine white rice flour and tapioca starch, all by weight. Or if you must, although it isn’t as precise, 2 cups brown to one cup each, white rice and tapioca. No additives, just the flour. Make a big batch and you’re always ready to bake. One volume cup of the Canteen blend is always 130 grams. For more info see our About Flours page. You’ll find a scale like this invaluable and it will save you money in the long run because you won’t have to waste expensive flours. 

Coconut Eclairs, Gluten Free
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Surprisingly easy, these eclairs are full of big coconut flavor. The recipe makes about 12. Fill the same day you are serving. Keep refrigerated.
Ingredients
Coconut Eclair
  • 150 grams Canteen AP flour (1¼ cups)
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 240 grams full fat canned coconut milk (1 cup)
  • 30 grams unsalted butter (2 tablespoons)
  • 240 grams egg (4 extra-large eggs)
Coconut Pudding
  • 720 grams full fat canned coconut milk (3 cups)
  • 50 grams granulated sugar (4 tablespoons)
  • 30 grams corn starch (4 tablespoons)
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 75 grams egg yolk (3 extra-large eggs)
Chocolate Ganache
  • 60 grams full fat canned coconut milk (1/4 cup)
  • 120 grams semisweet chocolate, chopped (3/4 cup)
Topping
  • 30 grams flaked coconut (1/2 cup)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Prepare a large piping bag with a ½ inch star or plain tip or use a ⅓ cup scoop.
  2. Whisk together flour, sugar and salt in a small bowl. In a small container, whisk coconut milk to fully mix the liquid so it is smooth. In a large saucepan combine milk and butter and simmer over low heat until small bubbles appear. Immediately add the flour, all at once and stir with a wooden spoon until it forms a ball (which will happen most immediately). Turn the heat to the lowest setting and slap the dough ball around the pan for one minute. Turn heat off and continue to slap it around (really there is no better description) for about 30 seconds more. Place dough ball in a large bowl and let sit for one minute.
  3. Crack eggs into a small bowl. Using an electric mixer, start beating the dough (use the paddle attachment on a stand mixer) and add the eggs while the mixer is running - add one egg at a time and wait until it is fully blended in before adding each of the other eggs. If you add them all at once they will never mix in. Make sure the last one is fully worked in and the dough looks wet, slightly yellow and lumpy. Scrape into the piping bag. Pipe onto the prepared baking sheets - six to each pan. Eclairs are piped into a small 3-4 inch rope. They will look impossibly skinny and small, but they will puff up. Pipe or scoop rounds, trying to end with them looking tall so they puff up and not out.
  4. Sprinkle water on the pan by wetting your hand and flicking drops on the baking sheets. Set in the oven and bake for 11 minutes. Turn the oven to 350°F and bake about 15-20 minutes more or until they begin to look slightly dry, pale-brown and are thoroughly puffed up. Coconut choux dough will not brown very much, but will look pale golden. Remove and cool on rack until cold. Using a toothpick, poke a hole in through the top to let the steam escape if necessary.
  5. Whisk yolks until smooth. Add cornstarch and half the coconut milk to yolks, whisking to combine. Let mixture sit for two minutes. Whisk again and strain mixture into a medium saucepan so that any solid bits are left behind. Add remaining milk and sugar to saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until pudding thickens and begins to simmer. Remove from heat immediately and add vanilla. Place in a covered container and chill.
  6. In a microwave safe bowl heat coconut milk and chocolate for 30-35 seconds on high. Let the mixture sit for one minute. Stir gently until chocolate is smooth and silky. Let cool for 2-3 minutes.
  7. Slice off caps from eclairs and petit chouxs. Fill with custard. Replace caps and spoon ganache over the top of each. Top with a few coconut flakes. Let chocolate set about 10 minutes in the refrigerator. Serve cold.

Coconut Eclairs, gluten free easy.

Comments

  1. Lisa, I am so impressed by your baking skills. You are a true gluten-free pastry chef! That choux pastry looks absolutely perfect and the eclairs couldn’t be prettier 🙂 Love chocolate and coconut and will definitely add these to my “to bake” list.

  2. This looks like perfection! I must try these. 🙂

  3. Ah these look so gorgeous! And it’s great they turn out so well with gluten free flour!

  4. When you have Canteen AP flour – you mean the 200 Brown Rice/100 Sweet rice/ 100 Tapioca combo – or am I mistaken ???

  5. Cristina says:

    Hi

    I tried to bake the three cheese choux from your book last night but they didn’t puff up in the oven at all 🙁 I noticed that the dough was very runny, any idea what might cause this?

    Thank you for your help!

    C

    • GlutenFreeCanteen says:

      Sorry it didn’t work out for you Cristina. If you can give me more specific information I might be able to help you trouble shoot.

      • Cristina says:

        Hi, thanks for helping troubleshoot!

        My current theory is that the choux didn’t rise because it was too runny. By the time I was finished putting one scoop onto the tray, the previous one was already looking like a disc on the sheet–that runny! I wonder if that happened because I didn’t cool the dough before adding the eggs or because I didn’t have enough eggs, or because I didn’t beat them in hard enough? I followed the recipe in terms of quantities but I am an unexperienced cook so it’s probably a technique problem

      • GlutenFreeCanteen says:

        I bet with a little practice you’ll be making these things in no time at all. First, what flour did you use? Our recipes are developed using the mix you see in the recipe and many commercial mixes have too much starch and won’t work well with our recipes. Second, the dough when mixed in the pan should be like a ball, a sticky, stretchy ball of dough that is hard to push around. Once you move it to the mixer (and you need either a stand mixer or a good heavy duty electric hand mixer for choux dough) even if the dough is pretty warm, the eggs should mix in. You do need all the egg to make a choux puff. Plus it takes a little experience but once you’re familiar with how the egg mixes into the dough, you’ll know when it looks right. Add one egg at a time and mix it until the egg actually disappears into the dough. For a long time it’ll look slimy like the egg just won’t mix in, but all of a sudden it changes. Then mix in the next egg, etc until they are all mixed in quite well. When the dough is ready it will look like a very stretchy, sticky, thick dough and piping or scooping it will be a little hard to do (actually annoying to do) cause it’s so gooey. It shouldn’t be thin, runny or at all like batter. So two things to look for. When it’s in the saucepan over the heat the ball of dough will be quite thick and will stay in a ball and be tough to move around. In the mixing bowl, once the eggs are mixed in they should completely disappear and no egg goo should be evident. When you scoop or pipe the dough it will stay put on the baking sheet and be a little blob of dough because it will get much bigger when it bakes and puffs. The puff comes toward the end of the baking time. Hope that helps. And keep baking. It’ll get easier. Promise.

      • Hi there! Thank you for your suggestions, they’re awesome, they gave me courage to try again! This time, it will be mini eclairs. I made a batch of your flour mix and plan to use it until I’ve mastered the choux 🙂

      • GlutenFreeCanteen says:

        That’s great, Cristina. Let me know how it turns out.

  6. Cristina says:

    Hi Lisa

    Cristina here. I tried again tonight and the eclairs are rising in the oven!Success!!!!Thank you so much for your help! Tomorrow I’ll make a vanilla custard and then we’ll have eclairs for the weekend. Pessimistic as I was, I didn’t want to make the filling before seeing some adequate choux rising 😛

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