Red Nose choux buns recipe

TV Dinners: Fancy cooking something funny for money? Why not bake your very own edible red nose...

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Holding a cake sale? Throwing a pay-to-enter bake off competition? Contributing to a fundraiser buffet? However you’re raising money for Red Nose Day this year, souschef.co.uk has come up with a red nose bun recipe sure to help you ‘cook something funny for money’.

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Throughout its 25-year history, food and Comic Relief have been inextricably linked. There’s the peculiar, but classic British fundraiser of sitting in a bath of baked beans, as well as challenges to eat revolting types of food and revolting quantities of food.

In 1993, the tomato-shaped red noses flew off the shelf. In 1999, ‘Wine Relief’ was ingeniously launched – providing great discounts on bottles of wine, and also sending a chunk of the profits to charity. 2009 saw the launch of Gordon Ramsay’s charity sauce line, and Jamie Oliver’s Jamie’s Red Nose Recipes cookbook – where he encouraged people to ‘cook something funny for money’.

This year, The Great British Menu has adopted a comic theme, challenging chefs to create ‘witty and playful dishes.’ It’s also the first year of ‘Menu Relief’which has seen restaurants from Strada to Café Rouge create Red Nose menus, pledging a donation to Comic Relief for each order off the menu.

Most brilliantly though is Mary Berry’s contribution to the cause – with the Red Nose website challenging the nation to ‘Bake like Berry’. If only. Mary’s ‘top ideas and tips’ include holding a cake sale, throwing a pay-to-enter bake off competition, or getting people to bring in their best dish for a lunch buffet.

So we put on our thinking caps here at souschef.co.uk, and have come up with a failsafe recipe. The recipe is for Red Nose Buns – a profiterole-like, edible take on the iconic red nose, bound to put a smile on everyone’s face. It’s a great recipe to make with children, who can get involved with shaping the choux pastry, as well as filling and decorating the bite-sized buns afterwards.

A plateful of these edible red noses will make a centrepiece at a fundraiser cake sale, as well as a great entry for a bake off competition, and the crowning glory of any lunch buffet. So all you need to do is download Mary’s Bake Off Kit (bunting included!) and then Ready, Steady…Bake!

Comic Relief Red Nose Buns
Makes 20 small red nose buns

Choux pastry
150g flour
Pinch of salt
250ml water
125g unsalted butter
4 eggs, beaten with a fork

Filling
300ml double cream
2tbsp pistachio paste/ground pistachios
2 tbsp icing sugar

Icing
400g icing sugar
40 ml water
Red food colouring  

To make the buns

1. Heat oven to 200C

2. Sift the flour and salt into a bowl

3. In a large saucepan, heat the butter and water together. Bring to the boil, remove from heat, and quickly pour in the flour. Beat with a wooden spoon until the mixture comes together and pulls away from the sides.

4. Pour in a quarter of the egg, and beat using a wooden spoon. Initially the mixture will separate into ‘curds’, but keep mixing – it will come together. Add a little more egg and repeat. When all the egg has been added, continue beating until the batter is smooth and glossy. 

5. Line two baking trays with baking paper, and pipe out the mixture using a piping bag. The balls should be approx. 1 inch diameter, and 1.5 inches apart.

6. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Turn upside down, and make small holes in the base of each ball – this helps steam to evaporate and keeps the pastries crisp as they cool. Leave to cool on a wire cooling rack. The buns will keep well for a day or two in an airtight box. If you think they have gone a little soft, crisp them up again for a few minutes in a hot oven.

Finishing

1. Whisk the double cream until stiff, and stir through the caster sugar and ground pistachios or pistachio paste. Pipe a little into each profiterole.

2. Sift the icing sugar. Add warm water and mix. Stir in red food colouring a little at the time, until desired colour is reached.

3. Holding one bun at a time, dip the top into the coloured icing, and – turning the right way up – leave to set on a wire rack.

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RadioTimes.com’s TV Dinners series is designed to test your culinary mettle, whilst taking inspiration from some of your favourite television shows. From filling your empty belly with X Factor’s Chico-ry salad to a trip back in time to gorge yourself whilst sampling the delights of Downton Abbey, eat along with Homeland, or perhaps a slice of the supermodel lifestyle to enjoy with BINTM – each time the culinary magicians at Sous Chef will devise a new and exciting recipe for you to try…