Profiteroles are made up of the pastry balls, filling and can be garnished.
The pastry balls are made from French choux pastry. It is a light pastry dough used in many pastries. It contains only butter, water, flour and eggs.
There are several options for filling including whipped cream, custard, pastry cream and ice cream.
The puffs may be decorated or left plain or garnished with chocolate sauce, caramel, or a dusting of powdered sugar.
Profiteroles are sometimes assembled into a type of pièce montée called croquembouches. A croquembouche is composed of profiteroles piled into a cone and bound with spun sugar. Croquembouches are often served at weddings in France and Italy, during the Christmas holiday in France, and are served during important celebrations in Gibraltar.
According to some cookbooks, a chef by the name of Pantarelli or Pantanelli invented the dough for profiterole in 1540, seven years after he left Florence with Catherine de’ Medici and her court. He used the dough to make a gâteau and named it pâte à Pantanelli.
From there, Antoine Carême made modifications to the recipe, resulting in the recipe most commonly used now for profiteroles.
The word “profiterole” has existed in English since 1604, borrowed from French. The original meaning in both English and French is unclear, but later it came to mean a kind of roll “baked under the ashes”.
A 17th-century French recipe for a Potage de profiteolles or profiterolles describes a soup of dried small breads (presumably the profiteroles) simmered in almond broth and garnished with coxscombs, truffles, and so on.
Savory profiterole are made, filled with pureed meats, cheese, and so on. These were formerly common garnishes for soups.
The “cream puff” has appeared on US restaurant menus since at least 1851.
The largest serving of profiteroles is 243 kg (535.737 lb) and was achieved by Carnevale Airolese (Switzerland), in Airolo, Switzerland, on 7 March 2019. A team of 21 people prepared the largest serving of profiteroles in about 2 hours and 15 minutes.
Profiteroles are a national dish of Gibraltar.
A Bossche bol, a giant profiterole from the Dutch city of Den Bosch.
January 2 is National Creme Puff Day in the United States.