We wish to make a large batch of eclair cases and store them for a few days before filling and icing them What is the best way to keep them to preserve their quality
Making large quantities of eclairs for storage before finishing has to be undertaken with care as the characteristics of the product do not lend themselves to storage for long periods. There are two potential quality losses during storage; they are the loss or gain of moisture. Both can adversely affect the eating character of the final product.
Eclair cases are expected to be dry and crisp eating but not hard. Initially after baking the cases should be quite firm. The moisture content at the centre of the case may often be higher than that at the surface. It is therefore important to minimise further moisture losses from the product surface during cooling otherwise the moisture gradient from the inside to outside of the case would be increased and may cause the case to crack. If baking is extended too long then the cases may become hard eating.
The cases should be allowed to cool thoroughly before being stored in a closed container otherwise condensation may occur and cause softening of the products. Because they have a low moisture content eclair cases are prone to absorbing moisture from the atmosphere and so should be stored at a low relative humidity or in air-tight containers.
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