Grab a medium-sized saucepot and add the water, sugar, kosher salt and butter. Bring it to a light simmer and once all of the butter is melted, add the flour in one shot.
Reduce the heat to low and stir the dough until it forms a cohesive mass and a thin film begins to form on the bottom of the pot. This should only take a minute or two.
Place the pate choux into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and let it cool for 5 minutes. If the dough is too hot it will cook the eggs as you try to incorporate them.
Add the eggs, one at a time, into the dough. Wait for the first one to become totally incorporated before adding the second egg. Continue to mix on medium speed until the dough reforms into a paste–about 30 seconds to a minute. If the pate choux looks broken, give it some extra time mixing and eventually the dough will come together.
Place the pate choux into a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2 inch round tip. Push the dough toward the tip and give the bag a twist, then reserve it.
Pull all of the meat from the chicken bones and discard the carcass. Break down any larger pieces of meat so everything is somewhat consistent in size. Reserve the chicken meat for later on in the recipe.
Grab a 12x16 inch piece of parchment paper and mark off ring-shaped spots for you cream puffs using a 2-inch ring mold and a pencil. You should have enough room for a maximum of 24 cream puffs.
Dab a little bit of the pate choux in each corner of the sheet pan. This will anchor the parchment paper to it so the paper won’t move around when piping out you’re dough.
Pipe 2-inch rounds onto the sheet pan inside of each circle. The technique can be a little tricky–pipe each round then kind of twist the tip just as you’re finishing up. This will help to reduce the size of that tail can form on top of each round (just watch the video :)
Press down any tails that formed with a finger moistened with water. This step allows for an even rise and the cream puffs won’t burn unless of course, you overcook them.
Carefully brush the top of each round of dough with some egg wash. This step gives the cream puffs a nice golden brown crust. Be careful not to let the egg wash run onto the parchment paper though, or it could affect the dough’s ability to rise.
I’ve tried a number of methods when baking cream puffs and I’ve settled on a four-stage bake. This method gives me perfect results every time.
4 Stage Baking Method
400°F for 10 minutes
350°F for 10 minutes
275°F for 10 minutes
Oven off for 10 minutes
Remove the cream puffs from the oven once they're done baking and let them cool completely before filling. The cream puffs should have a hard, sturdy shell with a softer texture inside.
Add the heavy cream to a saucepot and bring it to a simmer.
Turn off the heat and add the dark chocolate and vanilla extract. Stir the mixture until a homogenous, velvety sauce forms, then whish in an ounce of unsalted butter
Put a lid on the pot and reserve it until it's time to serve the cream puffs. The sauce will thicken slightly as it rests.
Add the heavy cream to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.
Whip the cream on high speed until it starts to thicken up slightly, then add the powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and the orange blossom water. Continue whisking the cream on high speed until stiff peaks form.
Transfer the Chantilly cream into a pastry bag fitted with a star tip and reserve it in the fridge.
Grab the cream puffs and working one at a time, carefully cut the top off of each one. The insides should be fairly hollow, but if there's some dough that's in the way just remove it or press it down with your fingers.
Fill the cavity of each cream puff with some of the Chantilly cream, then continue piping over the edge in a circular motion finishing with a generous amount on top. Place the tops back onto the cream puffs are arrange them on an appropriately sized serving plate.
Take the chocolate ganache and drizzle it all over the tops of the cream puffs. Top the cream puffs with the roasted, chopped pistachios and finish the dessert off with a dusting of powdered sugar.