Jigglypuff Choux Buns

Randomly after my Rowlet Inarizushi recipe, one of the more requested Pokemon people wanted to see was Jigglypuff. Now I love Jigglypuff. The one in the anime, specifically when it would angrily react to everyone falling asleep to its singing, was bringing that mood for all of the Capricorns out there. So I wanted to make a dessert that embodied two things – the color pink, and something puffy. The puff was a no-brainer – pate choux is super easy and fun to make, and it would be a cute little vessel that my Jigglypuff would be sitting in. I would also make a mousse with ruby chocolate, since that would guarantee a naturally pink color. Ironically, this recipe stemmed from me wanting to do a parfait using ruby chocolate and blueberries, because I love that combination, but since then, I basically reworked it into being a ruby chocolate and blueberry choux bun that my little Jigglypuff can sit in. With ruby chocolate, you have a slight tartness, a buttery mouthfeel, and a sweet nuttiness that works well with fruits and nuts. With blueberries, they play off that tartness of the ruby chocolate well, and the add a more fresh quality. The two together work really nice, and it just so happened that they were also a great set of ingredients to recreate Jigglypuff with!

For the components, we have a pate choux cream puff with a craquelin, which is this thin cookie that is baked around the choux puff to add a crispy textural element. Inside, we have a ruby chocolate mousse, that will serve as the near entirety of Jigglypuff’s body, ears, head swirl, and arms, blueberry gelee to act as the base for the ears and as a fun filling to the puffs, and a naturally colored chantilly cream for the eyes. I painted on the mouths of the Jifflypuffs using activated charcoal as an edible paint(seriously I wish I learned this hack 3 years ago when I wound up spending 5 hours making bear buns), just so that these buns are 100% recognizable as a Jigglypuff, and nothing else! Truthfully, one of my fears with making these Pokemon-themed desserts is botching up the Pokemon so much that it either doesn’t resemble it without you telling somebody what it is, or it just straight up looking like a baker from “Nailed It!” baked it, aka nightmare fuel. So with these Jigglypuffs, I tried my best to keep them as close to the source material as possible to avoid any of that.

I will admit I made some modifications to the below recipe, just so that your Jigglypuffs will come out more perfect than mine did. The first was adding more agar to the blueberry gelee, as I noticed it began to leach out liquid. I also gave an option to use rectangular or square molds, as cutting those into triangular pieces will result in sharper ears that are more pointed up, as opposed to the curved down ears my Jigglypuffs had. I’m also putting down beetroot powder in the below craquelin recipe – mine used pitaya powder, which completely baked off and did not really come through at all in the final product. Your choux should be a lot more pink than mine because of that! I also added a little red beet powder and a higher concentration of blue spirulina into the eyes, just to give them a more dark blue meets indigo color that is more in line with Jigglypuff’s eye color – I just called mine shiny Jigglypuffs, since the color was more reminiscent of those. Yes, mine are rarer. Just kidding, they were mistakenly dyed too light of a color, but yours will not have that issue so long as you follow the revised recipe! Overall I plan to revisit making these with the below modifications, but for now, I have stared at a picture of a Jigglypuff for far too long, and I’d like to move on to other dessert projects!

Makes 6-8 Jigglypuffs:
For the blueberry gelee:
3oz blueberries(preferably frozen but fresh works too!)
1/4 cup water
a pinch of salt
1 1/4 tsp agar agar

In a blender, puree the blueberries with water first. Pass through a sieve to remove any lumps and pour the strained liquid into a pot with the salt and agar. Heat up the mixture until reduced by about half. Pour the mixture into silicone 1/2-inch half sphere molds and freeze solid. For the ears, you will take one of those half spheres and cut them into quarters, which will make enough ears for two Jigglypuffs. Assemble the remaining spheres, and keep all of these frozen solid for easier assembly on the final product!

For the ruby chocolate mousse:
3.5oz ruby chocolate
1 tsp gelatin powder + 1 tbsp cold water
1/4 cup whole milk
a pinch of salt
1/4 tsp red beet powder
1/4 cup heavy cream

In a pot, heat up ruby chocolate, gelatin, milk, and salt. Once everything is dissolved together, pour the ruby chocolate mixture into a bowl and fold in the red beet powder. Allow the mixture to cool down completely before mixing in the heavy cream using a whisk to incorporate air – the mixture should begin to cling to the sides of the whisk, but not be whipped to the consistency of stiff cream or else it will break and need to be re-melted and re-mixed! Chill down the mousse for at least 1 hour. If chilling down for longer, mix the mousse again using a rubber spatula or with a stand mixer paddle attachment just to soften it. Divide the mixture into two piping bags – 3/4 of the mousse will go into a piping bag with a large round tip, and the rest into a smaller bag with a small round tip.

For the red craquelin:
1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tsp red beet powder

Mix to form a dough. Refrigerate for 10 minutes. Roll out on a floured surface and cut into 8 2-inch disks. Keep cold for now. Ideally you want these to be frozen solid, or chilled down enough to cleanly transfer onto the tops of your choux buns.

For the pate choux:
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 egg
Craquelin dough

In a pot, bring the water and butter to a simmer. Once the butter is fully melted, mix in the flour and stir into a shiny ball. Cool down the dough ball and mix in the egg to form a batter. On a lined sheet tray, pipe into 8 puffs, keep each about 2 inches apart. Place on each dough ball the craquelin dough. Bake at 375 degrees F for 20 minutes, and 350 degrees F for another 15. Cool before using.

For the chantilly cream:
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 tsp confectioner’s sugar
1/4 tsp xanthan gum*
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp blue spirulina powder
a pinch of red beet powder

In a bowl, whip everything besides the blue spirulina together to soft peaks. Portion out 1/4 of the cream, and dye the rest with the blue spirulina. Spread the blue cream onto parchment in an even layer, and freeze solid. Cut out the blue cream into disks for the blue portions of the “eyes” and keep frozen solid. With the white cream, continue to whisk it to stiff peaks and do the same – spread it as thinly as possible, freeze the cream solid, and cut out slightly larger disks. Keep both in the freezer for as long as possible, as you want these to stay frozen solid.

To garnish:
1/4 tsp activated charcoal powder
1 drop vanilla extract

Cut the choux buns in half horizontally(think hamburger). With the large tip bag, pipe a small amount of the ruby chocolate mousse on the base, then add in a blueberry gelee sphere. Then pipe more mousse on top of that to form the Jigglypuff’s “body” again using the large tip bag. For the small tip bag, use that to create your ears, head curl, and arms. For the eyes, press the blue disks against the white disks of frozen cream and working quickly here, transfer those onto the ruby chocolate mousses. In a bowl, mix together the charcoal powder and vanilla extract to form your edible paint and draw on the mouths. You can either use a skewer or the end of a rounded piping tip to paint on the mouths with.

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