Today is (for our chocolate lovers):
NATIONAL CHOCOLATE ECLAIR DAY
National Chocolate Eclair Day is observed annually on June 22nd. This is a day for everyone to enjoy a delicious cream-filled pastry that is covered in smooth chocolate.
The French make many delicacies from a dough called pate a choux. One of these pastries is the Eclair. It is piped into an oblong shape using a pastry bag. When baked, it is light and crispy on the outside and hollow on the inside making it the perfect avenue for transporting creamy vanilla or chocolate creme.
The word “eclair” comes from the French word, meaning “flash of lightning.” The connection between this and this French pastry remains unclear.
Originating during the nineteenth century in France, the eclair was first called “pain à la Duchesse” or “petite Duchesse”. It is believed, by food historians, that eclairs were first made by French chef Antonin Careme (1784-1833).
The 1884 Boston Cooking School Cook Book, by Mrs. D.A. Lincoln, has the first known English-language recipe for eclairs.
Long Johns are marketed under the name eclairs in some parts of the United States. The two are not quite identical. Long Johns are made with donut pastry and typically filled with a vanilla pudding or custard, making it a simpler and less expensive alternative to the eclair.
Following are a few of our recipes for you to make, share and enjoy #NationalChocolateEclairDay!
History of Chocolate Éclair Day
Éclair… An enticing name for a treat, it even sounds decadent, but what does it actually mean? Éclair means “flash of lightning” and describes the speed at which these delicacies will disappear if left unguarded. These delicious treats were said to have first been invented by the French Chef Antonin Carême, a man with a tragic history that led to a grand creation in the early 19th century.
He was abandoned by his parents in the tumultuous days of the French Revolution and found work as kitchen boy to keep himself housed and fed. Some time later he found himself working as an apprentice to a famous pâtissier named Sylvain Bailly.
The young boy blossomed into an amazingly talented chef, so talented in fact that when he left Bailly’s training he was able to move from employer to employer with impunity. This was rare in a time when one’s employer practically owned them, in this case, he could move freely, such was his talent.
Out of that talent came a long-standing love for the delicacy that would disappear so fast it was named for this tendency. Some time later the Chocolate Éclair was invented and took its well-deserved position as the King of the Éclair.