Saint-Honoré is the patron saint of pastry chefs. A gateau Saint-Honoré is made with a cream puff dough and filled with Chiboust cream. This is named after a famous French pastry chef. At least, he's famous in some circles. I don't think you have to be French in order to have Saint-Honoré be your patron saint. Had I known this fact when I was making the spun sugar, I would definitely have said a little prayer to Saint-Honoré.
Then Jim bought a whisk and trimmed the ends off, so I felt obligated not to waste my surgically altered whisk.
The cake is an easy sponge cake, if you already have beurre noisette stashed away in your freezer. I used up the last of mine when we made financiers, so I should really count it as a separate component.
I don't think I'll ever tire of watching a few eggs magically turn into a thick, creamy, pale yellow mixture. I love kitchen alchemy.
The Chiboust cream (or crème Chiboust) is not difficult--just a version of creme patisserie.
A quick Google search tells me that the difference between Madagascar and Tahitian vanillais the subject of much writing, and perhaps I should not admit to being a vanilla ignoramus.
Jim really battened down the hatches in the back porch. He took four weeks of the New York Times, and spread it over the floor, our patio table, and my porch work station. Almost every square inch of the porch was protected by a section of the paper.
Only one thing left--piping the whipping cream. You may recall that I have a real problem with the whole concept of piping, not to mention its execution. But it's a lot easier with whipped cream than with buttercream, and it actually ended up looking okay.
(Only two members of the tasting panel this week, although I ended up giving away containers of the cake to a lot of people. This was one cake I didn't want to have sitting around tempting me to have it for breakfast.)
Karen: "This would be a fantastic dessert to make when you want to impress. It's so beautiful, and it tastes as good as it looks. I love all the flavors, and everything tastes so fresh."
Jim: "I like all the different flavors and textures. It's another cake that's not too sweet, which I really appreciate."