Growing up, I always ate pomelo with my grandpa because he was the only one willing to peel them. We’d score the top – always needing to cut deeper than expected to get through the pith – and then wrestle out the fruit from the centre (you can find some photos of the pomelo peeling process here) keeping the peel in one piece. My grandpa would then put a plate on top of the peel to help it dry flat into a flower, and thereafter it would spend a couple months dangling somewhere in the kitchen.
Nowadays I can peel my own pomelos (and I sometimes even cut my own pineapple! how I have grown), though I still look forwards the arrival of pomelos every winter.
Pomelos are also something I’ve found difficult to bake with due to their subtle flavour. I’ve been making some progress though – I’ve found that the peel tastes quite a distinct in these coconut & candied pomelo hot cross buns. The flesh on the other hand is best left uncooked. I find pomelos usually (though there is quite a bit of variation!) less acidic than other citrus such as oranges and grapefruit. It makes them quite amenable to being piled on top of desserts with minimal added sugar – for example, as in this pomelo, mint & rose tart from a few years ago.
Here is another pomelo dessert which uses (smaller) piles of pomelo pulp. Whole wheat choux au craquelin, coconut pastry cream, yuzu posset cream on top & pomelo. I don’t usually use two citruses together, but I find it quite a nice combination – yuzu provides the tartness that pomelo lacks, and both provide different themes on citrus. These puffs are by far the most refreshing choux recipe on the blog!
I fully admit, cream puffs seem to be a strange thing to make in a pandemic. But thanks to incredible ovenspring, choux pastry stretches quite far! As in, I made these 10 cream puffs with a single egg’s worth of batter and a 1/4 cup of flour. And while I then made a filling, you could always make chouquettes or throw in grated cheese for gougeres.
pomelo, coconut & yuzu cream puffs
Adapted from the cream puff cookie topping from Bouchon Bakery by Thomas Keller and Sebastien Rouxel. Makes plenty – you might have leftovers, but you can cut them it into circles and freeze it for further baking.
- 28g brown sugar
- 25g whole wheat flour
- 18g butter
Mix all ingredients together until it forms a cohesive dough. Place the dough between two sheets of parchment and roll out to a thickness of 1-2mm. Slide onto a pan and freeze until firm.
whole wheat choux
Adapted from Alain Ducasse via Food and Wine. Makes 10-12 medium puffs.
- 29g or 1/4 stick of butter or about 2 tbsp
- 60g/1/4 cup milk
- good pinch kosher salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 30g or 1/4 c whole wheat flour
- 1 large egg
Preheat the oven to 400F. Line a baking pan with a sheet of parchment paper – on the backside, trace 12 3.5cm circles.
Place the butter, milk, sugar and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Add the flour and quickly mix in with a wooden spoon. Lower the heat and continue to cook the mixture until it forms a ball. Remove the pastry from the heat and let cool slightly before adding the egg, a bit at a time, beaten into the pastry most easily with the aid of a wire whisk. The dough should now be shiny, but not fluid (if its something a bit new to you, look up a video or a more detailed tutorial for the right consistency!). Importantly, you don’t need to use all the egg – or you may need a bit more than one egg! Assess the consistency of the dough after each addition of egg – sometimes I stop with still a bit of egg left.
Transfer the pastry to a piping bag fitted with a large round tip. Pipe mounds of pastry onto the 3.5cm circles, each approximately a tablespoon-ish in size. Take the craquelin out of the freezer and cut 3.5cm circles from the dough. Top each puff with a round of the craquelin.
Bake for 5 minutes at 400F, then decrease temperature to 375F and bake 20-25 minutes more or until well browned. You can rotate the puffs after they’ve been in the oven for 20-25 minutes or so, once there are no worries of them deflating. Cut a small slit on the bottom of each puff to let the steam release and let cool on on a wire rack.
coconut milk pastry cream
Adapted from Alice Medrich via Food52.. Makes around 1 cup, or enough to fill around 18 choux puffs. Sweeten more to taste; I prefer it quite minimally sweetened.
- 13g rice flour
- 2 egg yolks
- 240g coconut milk
- 30g condensed milk (or more to taste to sweeten)
Whisk the rice flour and egg yolks together in a small bowl. Add the condensed milk and coconut milk. Transfer to a smallish saucepan. Over medium heat, warm the mixture until it just begins to bubble. Don’t let it vigorously bubble and turn down the heat a tad. Continue cooking, whisking constantly, for 5 minutes or until nicely thickened.
Pass through a fine sieve into a bowl, cover and chill.
yuzu posset cream
I love posset. This time I folded the posset with some whipped cream to pipe on top of the cream puffs – it makes quite a bit of extra. It doesn’t pipe the smoothest, so make sure you use a really large round tip as that will make the piping smoother than if you use a smaller tip. Posset adapted from Food52 lime posset.
- 96g heavy cream
- 25g sugar
- 1 tbsp yuzu juice
- 75g heavy cream
Boil the 96g heavy cream and sugar for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat and add the yuzu juice, whisking until incorporated. Transfer to a small bowl and chill completely.
Perform this step just before you need the yuzu cream. Whip the 75g heavy cream. Whisk a dollop of the cream into the posset to lighten it, then fold in the remaining cream. Transfer to a pastry big fitted with a big round tip.
To prepare the pomelo (I used about 3 big wedges), peel the membrane from each wedge. Break up the pulp into smaller clumps for stuffing into the cream puffs. Reserve a few larger pieces for topping the puffs.
To assemble, slice the top off of the cream puffs. Transfer the coconut pastry cream into a pastry bag – I quite like the long filling tip as it makes it easy to get into all the corners to fill the puff. Pipe full of pastry cream, leaving some space. Push some pomelo into the cream puff to fill the remainder of the cavity.
Pipe a dollop of yuzu posset cream on top of each and top with a chunk of pomelo.