Makes 18 (to serve 9)
1 quantity freshly-made choux paste still warm
Eggwash (1 egg yolk mixed with 1 tbsp milk)
Bunch of watercress, trimmed and well washed
36 prawns, cooked and peeled, tails left on
Salt and freshly ground pepper
• For the mayonnaise, pour the orange juice into a small pan and bring to a simmer. Let it bubble gently until reduced to three tbsp, then tip into a small bowl and leave to cool. Mix the cooled orange juice with the mayonnaise.
• For the éclairs, preheat the oven to 180°C. Put the choux paste into a piping bag fitted with a plain 1.5cm nozzle. Line a baking sheet with greaseproof paper. Pipe 18 choux bars, each 10cm long, onto the baking sheet, spacing them 5cm apart. Brush with the eggwash. Cook the éclairs for 25 minutes until dry and crisp on the outside, but still soft inside. Place on a wire rack to cool.
• Cut away the peel and pith from the oranges, holding them over a bowl to catch the juice. Cut out the segments between the membranes and add to the bowl with the juice. Set aside one third of the smallest and most attractive watercress leaves for the garnish; snip the rest of the leaves.
• To assemble the éclairs, slit them open along one side using a serrated knife, making sure you don’t cut them completely in half. Mix half the orange mayonnaise with the snipped watercress and season with salt and pepper to taste. Spoon into the éclairs and spread evenly. Dunk the prawns in the remaining mayonnaise and arrange two in each éclair, leaving the tails protruding. Add a couple of orange segments and a few of the reserved watercress leaves to each éclair. Serve the savoury éclairs on individual plates, allowing two per person.
Tip from the top
‘Original and light yet creamy, these delicious savoury éclairs are always popular. In the summer I often include them in an al fresco buffet.’