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Vive la France! Celebrate Bastille Day with a classic croquembouche

Bastille Day recipe: Classic Frech CroquemboucheIn celebration of Bastille Day on July 14, Le Cordon Bleu Adelaide chef and patisserie lecturer Jenni Key shares her recipe for a stunning and uniquely French croquembouche, best shared with friends and family.

Jenni, who has been teaching Le Cordon Bleu Adelaide Patisserie students for seven years, says Bastille Day is an important day on the Le Cordon Bleu calendar, as the global institution’s first school opened in France in 1895.

“We love celebrating Bastille Day and what better way to join in the festivities than with a classic croquembouche,” she says.

“The French are known for their many wonderful desserts and pastries, but I think the croquembouche is by far the most impressive…and delicious.”

Jenni has 30 years of experience as a pastry chef and will prepare and assemble a croquembouche at the Adelaide Central Market on Friday, July 15, from 6pm. The cooking demonstration will be part of a wider Bastille Day celebration to be held that night in the Adelaide CBD's market precinct.

More information here

Croquembouche Recipe


For the choux pastry / pâte à choux
  • 125ml water
  • Pinch salt
  • Pinch sugar
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 95g baker's flour
  • 150g eggs
  • 5ml milk (optional)
For the caramel
  • 180g water
  • 500g sugar
For the pastry cream / crème pâtissière
  • 500ml milk
  • ¼ each vanilla bean
  • 100g egg yolks
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 60g corn flour


    For the choux pastry / pâte à choux
    1. Boil water, salt, butter and sugar.
    2. Add flour, make panada and allow to cool down.
    3. Add eggs gradually and adjust consistency with milk.
    4. Fill a piping bag and pipe required shapes.

    For the caramel
    1. Place water and sugar in a large saucepan and boil until the sugar turns to a caramel.
    2. Allow to cool before use.

    For the pastry cream / crème pâtissière
    1. Boil milk and vanilla bean.
    2. Mix egg yolks with sugar, then add the corn flour.
    3. Remove vanilla bean and add milk to mixture, then return to pan and cook for 2 minutes at least 78°C.

    To assemble
    1. Fill each puff with the crème pâtissière. Dip the top of each puff into caramel and allow to cool.
    2. To make the bottom layer, use 12 -15 puffs. One at a time, dip the side of the puff in caramel and stick to a cake board on its side (with the set caramel top facing outwards). You want to create a circle shape with the puffs.
    3. Attach the second layer, using the same or 1 less puff than the bottom layer. One at a time, dip the side of the puff into caramel and attach to the bottom row of puffs.
    4. Continue with this layering, using less and less puffs as it grows upwards.
    5. You should eventually get to the top where 1 or 3 puffs should finish the top of the cone.
    6. Finish the croquembouche with some spun sugar.
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