HomeRecipesChocolate Choux with Praline by Oleksandr Trofimenkov, KICA Brand Chef

Chocolate Choux with Praline by Oleksandr Trofimenkov, KICA Brand Chef

This recipe combines the bold, bittersweet flavors of chocolate with a crunchy, nutty almond-pecan praline. Each piece is crowned with a luxurious peak of airy chocolate cream atop a chocolate disc, creating a visually stunning and elegant dessert. As a final touch, the chef adorns each choux with delicate gold leaf, an elegant finish.

Yield: 25 (2.3ʺ/6 cm) choux

Chocolate Craquelin

  • 80 g unsalted butter 82%, room temperature
  • 9 g granulated sugar
  • 20 g dark chocolate 70%
  • 76 g all-purpose flour
  • 15 g almond powder
  • 5 g cocoa powder

1. Put the butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix to soften the butter.

2. Melt the chocolate to 86-95°F (30-35°C), then add to the butter mixture and mix until combined.

3. Sift together the flour, almond powder and cocoa powder. Add this dry mixture to the butter-chocolate mixture. Mix with a paddle attachment until the dough becomes uniform, soft and homogenous.

4. Shape the dough into a ball and then form it into a cylindrical shape. Place the dough right in the middle of a sheet of parchment paper and press down to flatten it. Cover the dough with another sheet of parchment paper and roll it out to 1.5 mm thick. Place the rolled-out dough in the freezer.

Chocolate Choux Pastry

  • 250 g whole eggs, room temperature
  • 100 g unsalted butter 82%, cubed
  • 128 g water
  • 128 g milk 3.2%
  • 5 g granulated sugar
  • 5 g sea salt
  • 55 g dark chocolate 70%
  • 133 g all-purpose flour

1. Mix the room-temperature eggs with a hand blender until smooth.

2. In a saucepan, combine the butter cubes, water, milk, sugar, salt and chocolate and place over low heat, stirring occasionally with a whisk. Once the butter and chocolate have melted completely, increase the heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Remove the mixture from the heat, then add all the sifted flour at once. Stir thoroughly with a whisk until smooth. To make sure all the starch in the flour has swelled, heat the choux pastry for another two minutes over low heat, stirring constantly with a spatula.

3. Transfer the choux pastry to the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix with a paddle attachment until it cools down to 131–140°F (55–60°C). Once the choux pastry has reached the required temperature, start to gradually add the eggs. Make sure to add them in several stages.* Cover the finished choux pastry with cling film and leave it to rest at 86°F (30°C) for an hour.

4. Transfer the choux pastry to a piping bag fitted with a 0.4ʺ (11 mm) round tip. Line a sheet pan with a silicone baking mat. Pipe little domes (each about 25 g) onto the mat, making sure to leave at least 1.5-2ʺ (4-5 cm) between them.

5. Once the craquelin is completely frozen, use a 2.7ʺ (7 cm) round cutter to cut out discs. These will be used to coat the choux pastries. Top each choux with a frozen craquelin disc.

6. Place the choux in an oven preheated to 392°F (200°C), and immediately reduce the heat to 329°F (165 °C). After approximately 15 minutes of baking, open the vent for a few seconds to let the steam out – this will help the choux become crunchy. The total baking time will be around 35-40 minutes.

7. Transfer the choux to a wire rack and let them cool down at room temperature. If you don’t wish to use all your choux immediately, you can freeze any that are left over. Then, at a later date, simply bake them for 2 minutes at 356°F (180°C) to restore their crunchiness and freshness.

*Note: The texture of the finished choux pastry should be assessed visually. This means you might need a little less egg mixture than is mentioned in the recipe. The choux pastry should be smooth, homogeneous, glossy, and fall off the paddle in a ribbon-like manner. If you have used all the eggs and still haven’t achieved the right texture, you can add a little warm milk, but this most likely won’t happen.

Chocolate Cream

  • 190 g milk 3.2%
  • 190 g heavy cream 35%
  • 50 g granulated sugar
  • 75 g egg yolks
  • 1 g sea salt
  • 225 g dark chocolate 70%

1. Pour the milk and cream into a saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil, then remove it from the heat.

2. Meanwhile, mix the sugar, egg yolks and salt until completely combined. Then gradually pour in the warm milk and cream mixture. Stir well and place the mixture back on the heat. Bring this mixture to 185°F (85 °C) over a low heat, while constantly stirring. Remove the saucepan from the heat, and pour the mixture over the dark chocolate. Process with a hand blender until an emulsion forms.

3. Cover it with cling film, making sure the film touches the surface of the cream. Place it in the refrigerator until it has completely stabilized.

Almond and Pecan Praline

  • 200 g pecans
  • 100 g almonds
  • 200 g granulated sugar
  • 4 g sea salt

1. Roast the nuts at 266°F (130°C) for 20-25 minutes. Let them cool down at room temperature. Do not remove the skins.

2. Melt the sugar in a saucepan until it turns amber in color. (To do this, bring it to 356-365°F (180-185°С) without stirring.)

3. Pour the caramel over the nuts and leave them at room temperature until the caramel hardens.

4. Transfer the hardened caramel-coated nuts to a food processor. Add the salt and blend at low speed until a semi-liquid paste is obtained. Store the praline at room temperature in a closed container for up to 3 months.

Chocolate Discs

  • 100 g dark chocolate 70%

1. Melt the dark chocolate to 122-131°F (50-55°C) over a water bath.

2. Pour the chocolate into a bowl and temper it by pouring out three quarters of the chocolate onto a chilled work surface and cooling it to 78-81°F (26-27°C). Then transfer the chocolate back into the bowl with the remaining chocolate so it is around 88°F (31°C).

3. Wipe your work surface with a damp cloth, then place down a sheet of acetate film. Smooth it out with a dry paper towel, making sure it is firmly in place.

4. Pour the tempered chocolate onto the acetate film, and cover it with a second sheet of acetate film. Spread the tempered chocolate in between them.

5. Once the chocolate starts to solidify, but is still pliable, use a 1.5ʺ (4 cm) round cutter to cut out several discs.

6. Place a baking tray (or any flat and heavy utensil) on top of the acetate film to make all discs even and equal in thickness. Leave the chocolate discs to solidify at room temperature for 2-3 hours. The room temperature should be around 68°F (20°C), otherwise the chocolate will not solidify.

7. Once the chocolate solidifies, remove the discs from the acetate film.


  • Cocoa powder 24%
  • Gold leaf

1. Transfer the Chocolate Cream to a piping bag fitted with a needle tip. Half-fill the choux with the cream, angling the piping needle from above.

2. Transfer the praline to a cornet. Fill the choux with the Almond and Pecan Praline until full.

3. Using a fine sieve, dust the choux with cocoa powder.

4. Pipe a drop of Chocolate Cream on top of each choux and attach a chocolate disc. Transfer the remaining chocolate cream into a piping bag fitted with a 0.6ʺ (15 mm) round tip. Pipe a dome of chocolate cream on top of the chocolate disc. Decorate with the gold leaf. Store the chocolate choux in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours.

Watch the chef assemble the choux pastry at www.youtube.com/shorts/7DKA6iZgpIo

(This recipe appeared in the Winter 2024 issue of Pastry Arts Magazine)

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