Craquelin is a great way to add visual contrast and an interesting texture to the top of pastries made with pate a choux. Craquelin is quite simple to make but will only stay crunchy for the day it is made. Fortunately, pate a choux is a simple process so be sure to give craquelin a try!
by weight by volume
1/4 cup butter 56 grams butter
1/3 cup brown sugar 67 grams butter
1/2 cup flour 63 grams flour
Mix the butter and the brown sugar to combine thoroughly.
Add the flour and mix just until the dough comes together.
Roll the dough out between sheets of parchment paper to 1/8″ thickness and place in the freezer until firm.
Once the pastries are piped on a baking sheet, remove the dough from the freezer and, in this case, cut circles from the dough that are slightly smaller than the piped mounds of pate a choux.
Place the circles on top of the pate a choux and bake immediately according to the baking instructions.
Follow the same guidelines for doneness by making sure the pate a choux is crispy and golden. Remove from the oven and let cool completely before filling. Since adding craquelin will also add size to your pastries you will need to make an adjustment. These two pastries were piped the same size so just be sure to pipe the mound of pate a choux smaller than the desired size of the finished pastry if you use craquelin.
Try making craquelin in different colors. Cocoa powder and matcha powder work well as do small amounts of regular food coloring – just be sure to maintain the textural integrity of the dough.
Make a sheet of craquelin in advance and keep it in the freezer until ready to use. Roll the dough out between the sheets of parchment and store in the freezer.