Alice Krohn's favorite pastime is planning parties, especially eye-catching dishes to serve at that them. These swan-shaped puffs are examples of the surprising treats guest at gatherings in her Maryland home enjoy. "It's fun to watch folks' eyes widen when I bring out these goodies.—Alice Krohn, Catonsville, Maryland
VERIFIED BY Taste of Home Test Kitchen
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs
- Pastry bag or heavy-duty resealable plastic bag
- #5 round pastry tip
- 2 packages (3.4 ounces each) instant vanilla pudding mix
- Confectioners' sugar, optional
- In a heavy saucepan over medium heat, bring water and butter to a boil. Add flour and salt all at once; 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; beat until smooth. Cut a small hole in the corner of pastry or plastic bag; insert round tip. Add 1/2 cup batter.
- On a greased baking sheet, pipe 36 2-in.-long S shapes for necks, making a small dollop at end of each for heat. Bake at 400° for 10 minutes or until golden. Remove to wire racks to cool.
- Drop remaining batter by level tablespoons 2 in. apart onto greased baking sheets. With a small icing knife, shape batter into 2-in. x 1-1/2-in. teardrops. Bake at 400° for 30-35 minutes or until golden. Remove to wire racks to cool.
- Prepare pudding according to package directions; chill. Just before serving, cut off top third of swan bodies; set aside. Spoon pudding into bottoms of puffs. Cut reserved top in half lengthwise for form wings; set wings in pudding. Place necks in pudding. Dust with confectioners' sugar if desired. Yield: 3 dozen.
Originally published as Cream Puff Swans in Country Woman January/February 1998, p38