Opal is the first fusion we see on Steven Universe. Yep. The first.
Anyway. When I think of Opal, I think of the song Giant Woman. Even if we haven’t gotten a ton of time to get to know Opal’s personality (short of being large and elegant), the song sets a good tone for who she is.
All I wanna do is see you turn into a giant woman,
A giant woman!
All I wanna be is someone who gets to see a giant woman.
-Steven singing Giant Woman
Opal is a coming together of two gems that often butt heads: Pearl and Amethyst. When they put aside their differences, it turns out they can make something pretty awesome.
OPAL’S BLACKBERRY ECLAIRS
Yields: 8-12 eclairs, depending on how large you pipe them.
120ml (.5 cups) blackberries, fresh or frozen
1 tsp lemon juice
100g (1 cup) powdered sugar (plus additional to adjust thickness)
Purple or blue food coloring (optional)
1. In a saucepan, combine the blackberries and lemon juice. Cook for 5-10 minutes or until the berries have broken down and some of the liquid has evaporated off. Mash the berries through a sieve to remove the seeds and allow the puree to cool.
2. Whisk the powdered sugar into the puree until smooth. Dip a flat spatula in and pull it up. If the glaze falls in a thick ribbon, it’s just right. Add lemon juice or powdered sugar to adjust the thickness if necessary. If you want the color more purple, adjust it with food coloring.
LAVENDER PASTRY CREAM
Note: For a vanilla pastry cream, just omit the lavender and jump right to step 2.
250ml (1 cup) milk
50g (1/4 cup) sugar
1.5 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp butter
1 scraped vanilla bean
1.5 tsp culinary grade lavender
250ml (1 cup) heavy cream, whipped to medium peaks
1. In a saucepan, combine the lavender with the half of heavy cream and heat, stirring periodically, until just steaming. Allow to steep for 2 minutes before pouring the cream through a sieve to remove the lavender pieces. Return the cream to the saucepan.
2. Add all the other ingredients except the butter to the cream in the saucepan. Cook on medium-low, stirring constantly until the mixture has thickened and cooked thoroughly.
2. Take it off the heat and mix in the butter while the cream is still hot. Once the two are combined, press the cream through a strainer, cover it in plastic wrap (pushing the wrap onto the surface to prevent a skin from forming) and chill the cream completely.
3. Stir the chilled cream to soften it a bit, then fold in the whipped heavy cream. Fill into a pastry bag and store in the fridge until ready to use.
75ml (scant 1/3 cup) water
75ml (scant 1/3 cup) milk
60g (1/4 cup) butter
120g (1 cup) bread flour
1 tbsp sugar
pinch of salt
1. Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C) and line a sheet pan with ungreased parchment or a silicone mat. In a saucepan, combine the water, milk, sugar, salt and butter. Bring to a rolling boil, then dump in the flour and mix vigorously. The mix will form into a ball. Continue mixing it; you want to dry the batter out some. The dough should begin to leave a slight film on the bottom. Dump the hot dough into a mixing bowl and mix it until cooled to room temperature.
2. Gradually add in the egg and beat with a mixer. Your goal is not to use all of the egg, but to achieve the proper consistency. Depending on how dry your dough is, you may use more or less than the recipe calls for. Add about 1/2 an egg at a time, mixing throughly after each addition. The dough is at the proper consistency when it’s just stretchy enough for you to take a pinch of it between your hand and stretch it to 1″ long. An alternative is lifting the paddle of your mixer and finding that the dough makes a V shape as it drops.
3. Fill the dough into a piping bag with a french star piping tip (I recommend #869) and pipe it into 4-5″ long strips about 2″ apart. If you have peaks, dip your fingertip in some water and gently pat them down.
4. Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce to temperature to 350°F (175°C). Allow to bake for another 10-15 minutes, or until nicely browned and dried out. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.
White tempered chocolate or candy melts, melted
Blue powdered or oil-based candy food coloring (not liquid)
Pearl luster dust (optional)
Chopped/crushed almond (optional)
1. Using a chopstick or similarly sized skewer, poke a hole in the bottom center of each eclair. Snip off the tip of the piping bag with the pastry cream, insert it into the hole and fill the eclairs. You should feel them plumping up a bit, but you don’t want to overfill it so much that it squeezes back out of the hole.
2. Once you’ve filled your eclairs, get your glaze ready. Stir it to get it smooth. You can either dip the tops of the eclairs directly into the glaze or you can use the professional glazing method: scoop some glaze onto a flat silicone/rubber spatula and allow it to fall off, then over the eclair through the stream of glaze to form a nice strip. Watch the gif below for a visual demonstration.
3. On a sheet of paper, draw Opal’s arrow shape about 3″ long and 1″ wide. (Use this image as a guide if it helps!) Mix a small amount of blue coloring into your white chocolate, then fill it into a small piping bag. Place a sheet of parchment or acetate over your drawing and use it as a guide to pipe out a few arrow shapes. Curl the parchment up against something to dry the arrows in a curve; I used a paper towel roll core that I cut in half vertically and it worked perfectly. Do a few at a time to prevent the arrows setting before you can curl the parchment.
4. If you’re using luster dust, dust the chocolate items. I also airbrushed some over the tops for extra sheen. Top each eclair with a blueberry, chocolate arrow and some crushed almonds and serve within a few hours for optimum freshness. The will eclairs keep in the fridge for a day or two.
I love blackberry, I love choux and I love pastry cream. Basically, I loved these. They’re satisfying without being super sweet or heavy. Hopefully you can try them out!
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