Serves 4

25 minutes 35 minutes.



5 tbsp butter, plus extra for greasing 200 ml/7 1 oz water 100 g/1 0Z plain flour.

3 eggs, beaten.


300 ml/10 1 oz double cream.

3 tbsp caster sugar.

1 tsp vanilla essence.


125 g/414 oz plain chocolate, broken into small pieces 1/2 tbsp butter 6 tbsp water.

2 tbsp brandy.

Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas Mark 6. Grease a large baking sheet with butter. To make the pastry, put the water and butter into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Meanwhile, sift the flour into a bowl.

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Remove the pan from the heat and beat in the flour until smooth. Cool for 5 minutes. Beat in enough of the eggs to give the mixture a soft, dropping consistency. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a 1 -cm/1/2-inch plain nozzle. Pipe small balls onto the baking sheet. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven. Pierce each ball with a skewer to let steam escape.

To make the filling, whip together the cream, sugar and vanilla essence. Cut the pastry balls almost in half, then fill with cream.

To make the sauce, gently melt the chocolate and butter with the water together in a small saucepan, stirring, until smooth. Stir in the brandy. Pile the profiteroles into individual serving dishes or into a pyramid on a raised cake stand. Pour over the sauce and serve.

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