This classic recipe for cream puffs is made with choux pastry and bakes up into airy, tender puffs. Slideshow: Breakfast Pastries
Preheat the oven to 400°. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a large saucepan, combine the water, butter, sugar and salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to moderate. Add the flour all at once and stir vigorously with a wooden spoon until a tight dough forms and pulls away from the side of the pan, 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat.
In a bowl, beat 7 eggs and add to the dough in four batches, stirring vigorously between additions until the eggs are completely incorporated and the pastry is smooth. The dough should be glossy and very slowly hang, stretch and fall from the spoon in thick ribbons. If necessary, beat in the remaining egg.
Transfer the dough to a piping bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain tip. Pipe 1 1/2-inch mounds onto the baking sheets, leaving 1 inch between them. Spray the mounds with nonstick cooking spray. Bake the choux for about 35 minutes, until browned and puffed, shifting the sheets from top to bottom and front to back halfway through. Let cool completely.
Using a serrated knife, slice off the tops and reserve. Fill the bottom halves with sweetened whipped cream and fresh raspberries, or Chocolate Pastry Cream. Replace the tops, dust with confectioners’ sugar and serve.
The baked choux can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days; recrisp in a 325° oven for 10 minutes.