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A few months ago, I discovered a pastry chef that has changed the way we view an éclair today. Christophe Adam, a now-famous pastry chef, has transformed and modernized the classic French éclair into a dessert that is colorful, fresh and appealing. His éclairs are stunning to look at and interesting to taste. Just imagine a selection of rainbow colors, edible powdered silver, art work and a mix of fun flavors like yuzu, salted caramel, orange pistachio, and caramel popcorn. He has modernized the famous French éclair and has made it trendy and fashionable.
In contrast to the rainbow-hued macaron, the éclair has long been more delicious than it was beautiful. Traditionally glazed in neutral shades of chocolate or coffee, this classic French childhood snack had an enduring charm, but it has never been a visual standout in the pastry case. Nevertheless, the finger-shaped, cream-stuffed choux pastry has always been beloved, and pastry chefs have been making it pretty much the same way since the 1800s, unmoved to fix something that wasn’t ever really broken.
But then came Chef Christophe Adam, who made the éclair a fashionable item that changes every season. Creating themes, using Pantone colors, creative designs and more, this chef created a whole buzz around his concepts over the internet in no time. But are they as good as they look?
While working as a chef at Fauchon, Pastry Chef Christophe Adam began experimenting with ways to modernize éclair design, producing a bright orange éclair and a memorable iteration adorned with a digital image of the Mona Lisa. He viewed the classic éclair not as a fait accompli but a point of departure.
Adam has injected excitement into the traditional world of French pastry not by inventing something new along the lines of a cronut, but by giving an old silhouette a new more modern appeal. New techniques and creativity can be seen in his éclairs - from Pop art colors, blingy high-gloss finishes made with edible powdered silver, their flavor profiles enlivened with novel ingredients like yuzu, fresh strawberries, popcorn, and salted caramel. He has also engineered the éclairs to be lighter in texture and reduced the sugar content of the icing.
L’Éclair de Génie, owned by Chef Christophe Adam, has one of its two shops in Passy Plaza where a colorful display of eclairs awaits you. It was only 11 am, and we just finished breakfast, and we were preparing for a new lunch discovery but as I came across this beautiful display, I couldn't resist ordering five different flavors to try.
- Praline Noisettes: (Crème praliné noisette, noisettes caramélisées) This eclair is beautifully presented with caramelized nuts covered with gold leaves. A fresh dough filled generously with a consistent hazelnut coffee cream and topped with a rich chocolate frosting. Imagine eating a Nespresso. How nice! Softness, crunchiness, and amazement combined. That's innovative sublime culinary art.
- Rouge Framboise: (Crème framboise, chocolate grand cru et chocolate au lait). I think that's one of the most beautiful and most interesting éclairs around. A pronounced Ferrari red color that makes you want to order it first. A juicy raspberry flavor bursts onto your tongue while the chocolate filling takes over to smooths out the acidity of the frosting. This great mix of chocolate and raspberry is superb.
- Chouchou Caramel: (Crème caramel as Sel de Guérande, chouchou et caramel) incredibly awesome! A crunchy frosting, a rich caramel filling, a salty aftertaste... The creator of this cake is a genius indeed. I'm not sure that I'm able to describe it properly. An inner filling of caramel makes you pass your tongue around your palate with excitement unable to restraint yourself from moaning.
- Passion Framboise: (Creme passion) A simply edible painting. It's like eating a tropical fruit salad covered with raspberry. A rich yellow Pantone color frosting and another tasty, smooth yellow filling like nothing I've eaten before.
- Chocolat Grand Cru: A rich, creamy chocolate from Madagascar covered with a 64% dark cacao frosting. Dark and rich in premium flavors it is! Real dark chocolate that's not bitter but soft on the palate, covered with dark biscuits balls on top adding a fine crunch to every bite. That's what I call culinary extravaganza.
Not only beautiful to look at but tasty as well, the genius éclairs are to die for. I have never had anything that good before, that majestic, that fresh and that creative. The trip starts by the activation of one sense after the other. Visual as you lay your eyes on those artistic creations. Olfaction follows as you take a deep breath and prepare yourself for the ultimate feeling. Close your eyes, bite into one of let these pastry pieces and let your mind do the rest. As your palatal buds and tongue start working make sure to be alone cause you'll be moaning uncontrollably. Rich textures and interesting flavors would make you scream in awe. How nice it is to experience perfection.
That's what I call a rich, savory, mouthwatering piece of heavenly creation. Bravo!
If I want to compare these éclairs with the ones Fauchon sells in Lebanon, I would have to compare apples to oranges. Make it a point to pay L'Eclair de Genie a visit next time you're in Paris.
Tags: pastry dessert Sweet Tasty Colors Beautiful Popcorn Pop Art Eclair CHRISTOPHE ADAM Tutee le Colore Del Mondo chef Christophe Adam genius Passy Plaza Chocolat Grand Cru Passion Framboise Chouchou caramel Rouge Framboise Praline Noisettes
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