A Cream Puff, also known as a profiterole, is a lovely French pastry that has been around for hundreds of years. It can be filled with all kinds of fillings, but the most common are types of whipped cream or custard. The word profiterole has been in the English language since the 1600s and was around even longer than that in France. It’s a classic, but still delicious dessert that deserves the celebration it gets every year on January 2nd.
History of a Cream Puff
Cream puffs come from the French word chou à la crème or Profiterole. Dictated by the word Choux, meaning cabbage in French. The Choux pastry that makes cream puffs is rolled into balls that look like small cabbages that are filled with whipped cream or pastry cream, thus the cream puff was born. Cream Puff Day is a day that celebrates these little cabbage balls of goodness.
A supposed myth that in the 1500’s Popellini, the chef of Catherine de’ Medici, the Queen consort of France, created the Choux pastry.
Choux pastry is made from a mixture of butter, eggs, flour, water and salt and filled with either cheese, whipped cream/pastry cream, or ice cream.
The Debate About Cream Puffs vs Profiteroles
They are both made from the same Choux pastry or pastry dough, but Profiteroles are frozen after they are baked because they are typically filled with ice cream and covered in chocolate ganache, whereas cream puffs are not frozen and are typically filled with whipped cream or pastry cream.
How to Celebrate Cream Puff Day
Celebrate Cream Puff Day by eating from the bakery that has the world’s best cream puffs - Beard Papa’s, a small little bakery that started in Osaka, Japan in 1999 and has now expanded all over the world. Or you can stop by the Wisconsin State Fair that started in 1924 and grab cream puffs from the Cream Puff Bakery inside of the Original Cream Puff Pavilion operated by the Wisconsin Bakers Association.