(This recipe appeared in the Spring 2021 issue of Pastry Arts Magazine)
For this recipe, I wanted to utilize an ingredient that I love and that reminds me of home. Ube, also known as purple yam, is abundant in the Philippines, so I decided to feature it in a classic French dessert, the Paris-Brest. I love the mild sweetness the ube contributes to this dessert, as well as the striking purple hue. It’s a sophisticated pastry that still reminds me of my roots.
Yield: twelve 3” rounds
- 30 g all-purpose flour
- 30 g granulated sugar
- 20 g unsalted butter, cold
- 10 g ube powder
- In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix all ingredients to a homogenous paste.
- Place the dough on a piece of film wrap and roll like a mini log. Freeze until hard enough to grate.
- Grate frozen ube log on a plate and keep in freezer until ready to use.
- 188 g water
- 63 g whole milk
- 2.5 g salt
- 7.5 g granulated sugar
- 100 g unsalted butter
- 150 g all-purpose flour, sifted
- 250 g whole eggs
- Bring the water, milk, salt, sugar and butter to a boil in a saucepan. When the mixture boils, remove it from the heat and rapidly incorporate the flour with a spatula. Place the saucepan back on low heat and cook, stirring constantly to prevent burning, until the dough stops sticking to the side of the pan.
- Place the dough in a mixing bowl fitted with a flat beater. Add the eggs gradually and incorporate until the dough is shiny and smooth.
- Fill a pastry bag fitted with a large French tip with the dough and pipe twelve 3” rounds on a full sheet pan lined with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Brush each round with eggwash and sprinkle with grated Ube Streusel. Bake in a convection oven at 300˚F (149˚C) for 40-50 minutes.
- 1440 g water
- 40 g brown sugar
- 115 g ube powder
- 700 g condensed milk
- 700 g evaporated milk
- 26 g ube extract
- 60 g unsalted butter
- In a saucepan, combine the water, brown sugar and ube powder and cook over medium heat for 15 minutes. Add the milks and ube extract and bring to a simmer; reduce heat to low and cook, stirring frequently to avoid burning, until thick and spreadable, about 30 minutes.
- Remove pan from heat and whisk in butter gradually. Allow to cool before using.
Vanilla Mousseline Cream
- 630 g whole milk
- 10 g vanilla extract
- 125 g egg yolks
- 160 g granulated sugar
- 50 g cornstarch
- 260 g unsalted butter, softened
- In a saucepan, bring the milk and vanilla to a boil. Meanwhile, in a bowl, whisk the egg yolks, sugar and cornstarch together. Temper the hot milk into egg yolk mixture. Pour everything back into saucepan and cook on medium-low heat 185˚F (85˚C), stirring and whisking to avoid burning.
- Transfer the pastry cream to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to chill in refrigerator.
- Once the pastry cream is cold, cream the butter and set aside. Whisk the pastry cream and add the whipped creamed butter.
- Apricot glaze
- 12 quartered strawberries without leaves
- Small mango cubes
- Small mint leaves
- Toasted coconut
- Arctic snow
- Cut the baked choux pastry in half crosswise. Pipe the Ube Jam onto the bottom half. Fit a pastry bag with a large star tip and fill one side of the bag with the Vanilla Mousseline Cream and the other with Ube Jam to make a two-tone filling. Pipe filling over the piped jam. Sprinkle toasted coconut over the filling, then place top part of pate choux over it. Pipe 3 dots of Ube Jam on top and arrange a glazed strawberry quarter, one mango cube and 1 mint leaf on each dot. Dust with arctic snow.
Headshots by Kent Youngblood
Dessert shots by Gigi Salzman Youngblood
About Emma Nemechek
Emma Nemechek is the owner of Sweetened Patisserie LLC and went to the Art Institute of Colorado. She attended college to get a degree in baking and pastry, and she started her career in the kitchen at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Denver. She loves to bake and make pastries, which led her to open a small business where she makes custom wedding and celebration cakes, custom corporate logo and/or image cookies, and some breads. She won the prestigious Les Dames d’Escoffier International Legacy Award in 2018.