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Creme de Menthe Cream Puff Tree

 Creme de Menthe Cream Puff Tree
A tower of creme de menthe-flavored puffs makes an eye-catching centerpiece for your dessert table. Guests will have this luscious Christmas tree undecorated quickly!—Agnes Ward, Stratford, Ontario
60 ServingsPrep: 1-1/2 hours + chilling Bake: 25 min. + cooling

Ingredients

  • 1-1/4 cups water
  • 2/3 cup butter, cubed
  • 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 5 eggs
  • FILLING:
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/3 cup green creme de menthe
  • GLAZE:
  • 1/3 cup butter, cubed
  • 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 3 to 6 tablespoons hot water
  • Additional confectioners' sugar, optional

Directions

  • In a large saucepan, bring water and butter to a boil. Add flour all
  • at once and stir until a smooth ball forms. Remove from the heat;
  • let stand for 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after
  • each addition. Continue beating until mixture is smooth and shiny.
  • Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls 2 in. apart onto greased baking sheets.

2 of 2

Creme de Menthe Cream Puff Tree (continued)

Directions (continued)

  • Bake at 400° for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Remove to
  • wire racks. Cut a small slit in the side of each puff to allow steam
  • to escape. Cool puffs.
  • For filling, in a large bowl, beat cream until soft peaks form. Fold
  • in creme de menthe. Pipe about 1 tablespoon into each puff.
  • Refrigerate for up to 2 hours.
  • For glaze, in a small saucepan, combine butter and chocolate. Cook
  • and stir over low heat until melted. Remove from the heat. Stir in
  • the confectioners' sugar, vanilla and enough water to make desired
  • consistency for dipping.
  • To assemble tree: Separate puffs according to size and shape,
  • choosing the flattest ones for the bottom layer and the smallest
  • ones for the top. Dip the bottoms of the 21 flattest puffs into
  • glaze. Place on a 10-in. round serving platter, forming a solid
  • circle.
  • For the second layer, dip glaze on the bottoms of 15 puffs, then
  • position on base layer. Continue building tree, using about 11 puffs
  • in third layer, about six puffs in fourth layer, about four puffs in
  • fifth layer and one puff on top.
  • Drizzle remaining glaze over tree, thinning with hot water if
  • necessary.
  • Loosely cover tree with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 2
  • hours. Just before serving, dust with confectioners' sugar if
  • desired. Yield: 60 servings.
Nutritional Facts: 1 mini cream puff equals 96 calories, 7 g fat (4 g saturated fat), 37 mg cholesterol, 31 mg sodium, 7 g carbohydrate, trace fiber, 1 g protein.
Wine: Sweet White Wine: Enjoy this recipe with a sweet white wine such as Moscato or a sweet Riesling.