17 July 2015
If you’re throwing a dinner party and want to end on a high note (or just try to seem a bit posh), then a soufflé is probably the way to go. To complement the flavours (as well as up the ‘wow factor’) I think my ice cream and praline accompaniments work quite well.
You may think there’s a degree of difficulty (and snobbery) when it comes to making soufflé, but that’s not necessarily correct. I have listed the recipe as ‘advanced’, but this is more so due to the dish as a whole. The soufflé itself is probably ‘intermediate’ at most.
While it may seem a bit pedantic to make your own ice cream, this is an ‘advanced’ dish, so why the heck not?
This is a fairly simple recipe, and it’s even better as you will not require an ice cream maker for it.
Of course you can just use a store-bought ice cream instead, because most people probably can’t be bothered to make it!
5 egg yolks
¼ cup glucose syrup
½ cup caster sugar
200g white chocolate
Pinch of salt
As with all of my recipes that will list milk, I will always mean full cream milk. You won’t get the same results with lite or skim milk, and don’t even get me started on soy/coconut/rice/almond/whatever milk as that’s completely not what I’m going for here!
In regards to the cream, I mean just plain pure or single cream, not double cream or something with thickeners.
Adding glucose syrup ensures a smaller ice crystal in the finished product, which basically means a lighter and softer texture. Since I don’t use an ice cream maker, I need all the assistance I can get with this. In America, you will probably find this called corn syrup.
Use the best white chocolate you can get here. If you have a favourite brand, then go for it! I would also request that you go for ‘eating’ chocolate rather than ‘cooking’ chocolate, as the flavour and quality is much better.
1. Place the milk and 1/3 of the cream (200ml) into a saucepan over medium-low heat until almost simmering, then remove from the heat. (Put the rest of the cream back into the fridge for later in the recipe.)
2. Whisk together egg yolks, sugar, glucose and salt until pale and thick.
3. Whisk a small splash of warm milk/cream mixture into the egg mixture, then slowly whisk in the rest until combined.
4. Pour everything back into pot, place over a medium-low heat and allow to cook while stirring constantly until the custard coats the spatula. (TIP: You want a pouring custard consistency, as opposed to something thick like crème patissiere.)
5. In a large jug, pour the custard over the chocolate through a sieve and leave for 5 minutes, then stir until combined and smooth.
6. Allow the mixture to cool, then cover and place into the fridge for at least 2 hours or until chilled.
7. With a handheld mixer, whisk the remaining cream (400ml) to soft peaks, then fold it gently into the chilled custard until fully combined.
8. Transfer into a container with a tight-fitting lid and place into the freezer for 1½-2 hours. (NO LONGER THAN THIS OTHERWISE IT WILL FREEZE COMPLETELY!)
9. Remove the semi-frozen ice cream from the freezer and whip it up with an electric mixer for 30-60 seconds, then return to the freezer to freeze completely.
10. The ice cream is now ready to serve. (TIP: I would recommend that you remove it from the freezer approx. 15 minutes before serving for the optimum texture. Also, use a wet scoop as opposed to a warmed scoop; this will allow you to get a more visually appealing scoop, assuming that you into that sort of thing. And let’s face it, if you’re thinking of making this, then you probably are!)
Makes up to 2 litres.
A video of this part of the recipe is also available - https://youtu.be/PISH5KhsOcc.
I’ll admit that this probably doesn’t really contribute anything important to the dish, but if you want a little something extra, this does nicely.
If you don’t want this, then I’d recommend some crushed Amoretti biscuits instead.
On the other hand, this shows that I may have FINALLY managed to sort out my toffee shortcomings (for those of you who know me, there’s a reason why my profiteroles are always dipped in chocolate).
1 cup caster sugar
½ cup flaked almonds
2 tbsp water
1 tsp cream of tartar
So, it turns out that the thing that was always missing from my toffees was cream of tartar, and it was my mother who finally let me into this secret. Thanks Mum!
Also, ‘cream of tartar’ is a misleading name. It isn’t creamy, nor is it a plaque build-up on your teeth, but actually a chemical powder that is a by-product of winemaking. It has a number of cooking uses, most notably in stabilising whipped eggwhites or cream, but in this case I’m using it to prevent the crystallisation of sugar in my toffee syrup. I still don’t understand where the name comes from, but I guess ‘potassium bitartrate’ or ‘potassium hydrogen tartrate’ don’t sound as food friendly?
1. Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F) and line a tray with baking paper.
2. Scatter the almonds over the paper as evenly as you can, then bake them for approx. 5 minutes or until golden and toasted. Place aside until needed, but leave it on the tray.
3. In a small saucepan, heat the sugar, water and cream of tartar over a medium heat until bubbling.
4. Allow to bubble until it changes to an amber colour, then remove it from the heat.
5. Pour the syrup over the toasted almonds, place another sheet of baking paper over it and smooth out gently. (Be very careful! Sugar syrups are blisteringly hot.)
6. Allow to cool, then peel off the top layer of baking paper, and break the praline into shards and/or crush to a powder. (I usually do both for presentation purposes.)
7. Serve with ice cream or use to decorate cakes, pastries, etc.
A video of this part of the recipe is also available - https://youtu.be/YvMQ_iOEUrE.
The star of the show! As mentioned above, this is actually much easier than you probably think it is. They key is having the right equipment for the job.
It’s also important to realise that they won’t always rise as much as you want them to. Sometimes they’ll almost double, while other times they’ll barely get above the rim of the ramekin. At least they’ll always taste good!
5 large eggwhites
½ cup caster sugar
1/3 cup self-raising flour
75g unsalted butter, cubed
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp lemon juice
Melted butter, extra
Caster sugar, extra
Icing sugar, for dusting
You can use either fresh or frozen raspberries for this recipe. I’ll usually buy fresh raspberries and store them in the freezer anyway.
Busted! Using self-raising flour in a soufflé! Well, why not? You want it to rise, don’t you? *shrug*
1. Preheat oven to 200°C (390°F).
2. Brush 4-6 ramekins with the additional melted butter in an upwards motion, then add a teaspoon of the extra caster sugar, turning until coated evenly, then shake out the excess. (The number of ramekins won’t always be the same. Some eggs are bigger than others, as are ramekins, plus sometimes the weather can play a factor in how much air you can beat into the eggwhites, or the amount of air that gets knocked out when mixing in the soufflé base sometimes varies, plus several other factors. I’ve always gotten at least 4 serves out of this recipe.)
3. In a saucepan, heat the raspberries, half of the sugar (1/4 cup), water and lemon juice over a medium-high heat until the juices release and begin to bubble.
4. Pour through a sieve into a jug or bowl and press out as much juice as you can, then place aside until needed. (Discard the seeds, you don’t really want or need them.)
5. Melt the butter in a saucepan over a medium heat, then add the flour (to make roux), and stir together until it becomes a light golden-brown colour.
6. Whisk in the raspberry mixture and continue whisking until combined, then place aside to cool for around half an hour. (It can get quite thick as it cools, but don’t stress too much about this.)
7. Beat the eggwhites to soft peaks in a stand mixer, then add remaining caster sugar (1/4 cup) a bit at a time (while mixing) until it reaches stiff peaks. (you can probably use a handheld mixer for this, but I find stand mixers do a better job.)
8. Mix a dollop of the meringue mixture into the raspberry base to lighten it, then gently fold the two mixtures together until fully combined. (The rougher you are, the more air you’ll knock out, which means your soufflés won’t rise as much.)
9. Using a spatula, fill the prepared ramekins with the soufflé mixture all the way to the top, then smooth it over.
10. Wet your index finger in some water and run it around the inside top edge of the ramekins to make a border.
11. Place the filled ramekins onto a tray and bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes.
12. Remove, dust with icing sugar, and serve immediately along with some ice cream (and praline).
Serves at least 4.
A video of this part of the recipe is also available - https://youtu.be/N22w9-59rrQ.