Making fresh choux buns is a joy. There really is nothing better than that crispy shell filled with ice cream, drizzled with hot toffee sauce. Top with whatever you like – try homemade honeycomb or toasted chopped nuts, crushed up biscuits or your favourite chocolate bar. This dessert is Instagramtastic, so get your phones out and get busy snapping, and don’t forget to hashtag #DonateforDinner.
For the choux pastry
75g diced butter
100g plain flour
3 whole eggs
For the salted toffee sauce
60g demerara sugar
2 tsp golden syrup
2 tsp treacle
160ml double cream
pinch of sea salt flakes
vanilla ice cream, scooped into 8 balls and refrozen (openfreeze on a tray the day before)
Your favourite toppings, crushed (optional)
honeycomb, chopped toasted hazelnuts or almonds, glazed cherries, hundreds & thousands, Crunchies, Maltesers, Oreos
Line a large baking tray with baking parchment. Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Heat the butter in a non-stick pan with 110ml water until melted. Increase the heat until boiling, then place on the lowest heat possible and quickly beat in the flour until the mixture comes together as a ball. Take off the heat, then beat in the eggs one at a time until glossy and thick, then leave to cool for a few mins.
Spoon or pipe the pastry onto the baking tray in eight equal-sized blobs (about 6-7cm wide), bake for 5 mins, then reduce the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6 and continue to bake until well risen and golden. Turn the oven off and leave the buns inside the oven to dry out until cool. Can be made a day ahead and kept in an airtight container.
For the sauce, tip the sugar, syrup, treacle and butter into a pan, bring to the boil and stir until combined. Pour in the double cream and bubble briskly for 2-3 mins until thickened slightly. Stir and season with a pinch of salt. The sauce can be made two days ahead and kept in an airtight container in a cool place. Reheat gently in the microwave or a saucepan before serving.
To serve, cut the buns in half, then place a ball of ice cream on the bottom half. Pop the lid back on and arrange over a big board. Drizzle with the warm toffee sauce and serve any toppings on the side for people to add themselves.