Whole Wheat Breakfast Eclairs: scrambled eggs never had it so good

For 20 years, I begged my husband to let me get chickens. “Please, please, please?” I’d say. “They don’t take up much room, and we can have all the eggs we want.”

Eventually we built a shed in the back yard and sectioned off a chicken coop. We built the Fort Knox of chicken runs, with posts and wire and underground booby traps. Living on 11 acres of wooded land in the heart of Vermont means predators of all varieties, so we were extra careful in our preparations, and it’s paid off well.

And eggs? Oh yes, we have eggs. Big ones, little ones, double yolkers. Eggs warm from the nest, eggs laid under the water stand, and the occasional egg underfoot when some lady forgets herself and lays one by the door. Four years in now, and I still get egg-cited for fresh eggs. (Sorry, I promise no more egg puns).

Egg scrambles are a must-have on weekends at our house, and often include leftovers of veggies and meats from the week. We take turns cooking them, and styles vary. I tend to be heavier on the cheeses and veggies, Dave tends to be a ham-n-eggs diehard. Either way, it’s different each time – and always delish.

When the idea of breakfast éclairs was tossed around at a blog meeting, I was all over it with an enthusiastic “Pick me, mee, mmmmmeeeeee!” I love making pâte à choux for puffs and éclairs; filling them with my favorite scrambled eggs was a win-win situation. If you’re looking to spark up your weekend mornings or your breakfast-for-dinner evenings, we’ve got just the dish for you.

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First you’ll need to make up your cream puff dough. Pâte à choux (say it “pat a shoo”), or choux paste, is a mixture of cooked butter, water, and flour mixed with eggs to make a soft dough that is piped into puffs or long éclairs. It’s then baked, cut open, hollowed, and filled with sweet or savory creams, mousses, ice creams or, in this case, scrambled eggs.

You’ll find full details for making choux paste both in our recipe for Whole Grain Cream Puff Pastry and its sister blog on profiteroles. Here’s the rundown, though –

Bring butter and water to a rolling boil, then add flour. Cook until it forms a soft dough, stirring constantly to prevent scorching.

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Cool the hot dough, then beat in eggs one at a time to make a soft paste. The eggs provide fat for tenderness, plus structure and moisture. Choux is leavened by steam alone – no baking soda, baking powder, or yeast here.

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For éclairs, pipe the unbaked dough into 4″ long strips onto parchment paper-lined baking sheets.  Bake for 15 minutes in a preheated 425°F oven. Reduce the temperature to 375°F, and bake for another 15 minutes until well-browned and dry to the touch.

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While you can use a sharp serrated knife to open up your puffs, I find a good pair of kitchen shears to be the easiest tool. Snip, snip, snip all the way around until your cover pops right off.

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Try to keep your tops and bottoms together as you work through your pile of éclair shells. This will save a lot of hunting for the right sized top later on.

If you’re serving just a few people, the uncut puffs will freeze very nicely for up to 3 months. Because they’re hollow they thaw in a flash, too.

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Ready for breakfast, lunch, brunch, or dinner? Cook up your favorite egg scramble, lay a bed of greens or arugula in your shell, and fill it to the brim.

This scramble has eggs from my gals, plus smoked ham, onion, Gruyère cheese and a touch of heavy cream to make it extra creamy and saucy.

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Add the top hat…

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…and serve hot. The crisp éclair shell makes a perfectly portable little boat if you want to eat hands-on; or you can be fancy and serve with knife and fork.

We’ve already been thinking of other wonderful fillings you could use in breakfast éclairs. How about mac and cheese? Or a little pulled pork? I’m a bratwurst fan, and think a sausage-onion éclair would be a morning stunner with a hot cup of strong coffee. The list is endless!

And so, my dears, we’re at the end of our blog. Is the moral of the story to make éclairs part of your breakfast lineup? Or to think of sumptuous fillings?

No, I think it really boils down to this… ask your family to help you raise chickens. For if you have those chickens, you’ll have the eggs. If you have the eggs, you’ll want to make the choux. If you make the éclairs, you’ll want to fill them with scrambled eggs. If you scramble up the eggs, you’ll need more eggs, so you need to raise chickens. If you have those chickens, you’ll have eggs…

Please bake, rate, and review our recipe for Whole Wheat Cream Puff Pastry.

Print just the recipe.

MaryJane Robbins
About

MaryJane Robbins grew up in Massachusetts and moved to Vermont 20 years ago. After teaching young children for 15 years, she changed careers and joined King Arthur Flour in 2005. MaryJane began working on King Arthur Flour’s baker’s hotline in 2006, and the blog team ...

comments

  1. Paul from Oho

    Oh yes…….the chicken coop!!!! Actually seen it in person people – she really does have one!!! My mom used to make Cream Puffs when I was a kid – I’ll bet she would NEVER HAVE imagined using them as shells for scrambled goodness! So creative MJ, so so creative. Love it. Since I have scrambled eggs every morning – maybe it’s time I dress them up a WHOLE LOT! One egg lover here gonna try this!!!!!

    Reply
  2. Maria

    These sound delicious. And definitely everyone should have chickens! The last paragraph of your blog sounds like the children’s book If You Give A Mouse A Cookie.

    Reply
  3. connie

    Can you make these Gluten free by just using a gluten free flour or would you have to add something to it?

    Reply
    1. MaryJane Robbins, post author

      Hi Connie,
      This should work out well as GF. Just be sure to add xanthan gum (most GF cream puff recipes call for about 3/4 teaspoon) and bake long enough for them to be fully set. ~ MJ

  4. Erin R.

    Oh, YES! Fantastic brunch idea! Bookmarked for my next family Christmas brunch. Do you suppose you could do baked eggs right in the eclair shells or would they get too soggy before the eggs cooked? Or would the shells burn? Mmm, all kinds of possibilities spinning through my mind right now.

    Reply
    1. MaryJane Robbins, post author

      HI Erin,
      I thought about baking the eggs in the shells too, and had some of the same hesitations. I think the bottoms of the shells would suffer from getting soggy, and the upper parts would tend to dry out too much. If you do give it a try, please let us know how it goes. ~ MJ

  5. Kalisa

    OH! Hey, never thought of something like this! Looks great for a variety of sandwiches and would be an nice presentation for a luncheon.

    I wish I could raise chickens. I would love to have them for eggs and meat but I know I wouldn’t have the heart to bring them to slaughter. They would all become pets and I would worry endlessly about them.

    Reply
    1. MaryJane Robbins, post author

      HI Kalisa,
      That’s exactly why I only have hens instead of meat birds, and yes, I do worry about them. I fretted every day during the sub zero weather here in January! ~ MJ

  6. Carolyn

    To anyone interested in back yard chickens I would strongly recommend Terry Golson’s book ‘The Farmstead Egg Guide & Cookbook’ (available from Amazon or maybe your local bookstore). The first section of the book is information about keeping chickens and the rest of the book is recipes to use the wonderful eggs. You should also check out her website – hencam.com where you can see her chickens and read her blog. (She is a loyal customer of The Baker’s Store and visited quite recently.)

    Reply
  7. Sue Chef

    Well, the yolk’s on me. Pass me the Crestor! Egg choux with egg filling! I didn’t know ideas like this eggsisted. This is a great eggsample, and truly an eggceptional recipe, and I eggspect to try it very soon. (I’m an eggspert cook who gets really eggcited about recipes, especially eggstra special ones.) Thanks for egging me on to try it.

    Reply
    1. Rachel M.

      I don’t eat shellfish, but wow…what an inventive combo. I can imagine that actually being quite good.

  8. Mary J. Robbins

    I very much enjoy your recipes, pictures and blog. Perhaps in part, because my name is Mary Janet Robbins, I worked in Early Childhood Education for 20 years, and my husband’s name is Dave. I’m your identical twin😊. I don’t have chickens, but I do have two dogs and a cat, as well as two adult children and a delightful grandson.

    Reply
    1. MaryJane Robbins, post author

      Wow! I’ve met a few other Mary Janes, and even a Mary who was a teacher with a husband named Dave, but I think this is fantastic! Thanks so much for posting, I’m just tickled pink! ~ MJ

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