This stuff is so good you’ll want to eat it with a spoon. It’s thick but light, firm but flowing…trust me, you’ll love it. Start by putting your yolks in the bowl of your mixer…
And whip for several minutes on medium high until they’re light and frothy.
Meanwhile heat your sugar syrup over a medium-high flame to 248 degrees Fahrenheit…
…and pour it into a heatproof glass measure like this:
Now then, stream a little into the mixer with the motor off, and immediate turn it up to high for about 15-20 seconds. Turn the motor off and repeat with more syrup. Why not just pour the syrup in with the motor running? Because it’ll spin out over the sides of the bowl, where it will immediately harden into sheet of candy. You don’t want that.
Once all the sugar is in, keep whipping for several minutes more until the pâté à bombe has cooled down and is only slightly warm. It’ll be very light and sticky, sort of like marshmallow fluff. Perfecto.
Use it immediately or freeze it for up to a month.
So what the heck is pâte à bombe, anyway? Pâte à bombe is aptly named, for it is, not to put too fine a point on it, the bomb. It’s a rich concoction of cooked sugar syrup and egg yolks, whipped up into a light, creamy consistency. Oh come on, Joe! Don’t make me learn how to make some esoteric French pastry ingredient that I’ll only use once in my life!
Ah, but hang on a minute. For pâte à bombe is one of those base components which, once you learn how to make it, you can find all sorts of interesting uses for. It’s the basis of French buttercream, for example. Also of a very silky style of non-custard pastry cream, and of course mousses, parfaits…there’s almost no limit. Plus it freezes extremely well, which makes it a handy secret weapon for those instances when you want to (literally) whip up something special on short notice. The formula goes like so:
12 ounces sugar
3 ounces water
12 egg yolks (9 ounces)
Combine the sugar and water in a small, preferably heavy, saucepan and bring the mixture to 248 degrees Fahrenheit. Meanwhile, whip the egg yolks in a stand mixer until light and frothy. Pour the hot syrup into a glass measure and with the machine off, pour a thin stream into the egg yolks. Turn the mixer on high for about 10 seconds to incorporate. Continue in this way until all the sugar syrup has been used. Continue to whip on medium-high until the pâté à bombe has almost doubled in volume and the bowl cools down to being somewhat warm to the touch.