The kodak moment was gone as I realized that I had forgotten to prepare my camera before this beautiful soufflé started to slowly sag away....
I am back from my enjoyable, yet restful, trip from Boston and happy to be able to cook again in my own kitchen.
This evening, I made a second attempt to make a dessert soufflé flavoured with juicy mango and passion fruit.
The first time I made it back in May, I was so nervous from hearing over the years how difficult it is to make a soufflé. Turns out that it isn't very hard. Mind you, the first time I made it, the recipe I chose from a French cookbook my uncle gave me last summer, sounded sooo complicated that I had to go back and forth from the book to my working station making sure that I had the ingredients and the steps down to a tee.
The second time around, the ingredients and steps were more easily remembered. In fact, logic was the key element which helped me understand how to prepare, and what makes a soufflé rise.
The recipe may sound extremely long, and I only wished I had made a video on this, as it is much worth the sweat and effort. Afterwards, it becomes almost a breeze.
Preparation : 30 minutes (45 minutes first time around), Cooking time : 15-20 minutes
Recipe « au pif » :2 passion fruits (granadilla of the same family can also be used if passion fruit can't be found)
1 ripe mango (peeled, pitted, cubed)
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
150 ml milk
100 ml cream
3 fresh eggs (separate yolk from egg white – put aside)
3 tbps granulated sugar (1/2 the amount if using raw cane sugar)
1 tbsp flour
½ tbsp corn starch
Preheat oven at 400F
Making the custard :Heat sauce pan on medium-high and pour in the milk and cream. Wait about 2-3 minutes for the milk and cream to boil.
In a mixing bowl, whisk vigorously 3 egg yolks and the sugar until you’ve reached a smooth mixture.
Whisk in the flour and corn starch into the egg and sugar mix. This is to thicken the pastry cream, giving it body.
Take the hot milk and cream and add only a splash into the egg mixture (so as not to cook the eggs). Whisk vigorously until you reach a nice and smooth texture. Then, add the rest of milk and cream mixture and continue whisking for about 30 seconds. Put the pan back on the heat and pour the egg and milk/cream mixture to the pan to cook it out. Whisk vigorously, making sure you get all the corners in the pan so that your custard doesn’t become lumpy. You should obtain a nice, thick and creamy custard.
Soufflé filling:Cut the passion fruit in half and scoop out al the flesh, seeds and juices, putting them into a sieve to get all the juice off the seed.
Blend the passion fruit juice, mango and lemon juice.
Add in the passion fruit/mango mix to the pastry cream and mix until well incorporated.
The nice thing about this soufflé recipe is that the flavoured custard can be prepared and refrigerated 2-3 days before preparing the final mix and baking it for you or your guests.
Preparing the ramequins (4 large or 6 small):* important tip : make sure that your soufflé does not stick to the ramequins so as to allow it to rise evenly, nice and high*
Grease the ramequins with softened butter with a pastry brush.
Line the ramequins with either sugar or granulated chocolate.
Refrigerate the greased and lined ramequins in the fridge for about 10-15 minutes so as to let the butter solidify and set.
In a mixing bowl, add a drop of lemon juice to the egg white and whisk with electric mixer.
Add ½ the amount of sugar, then gradually add the rest of the sugar to the egg white until you reached a meringue texture.
Add 1/3 of the meringue to the pastry cream and whisk vigorously for a few seconds to remove any lumps.
Add the remaining 2/3 of the meringue to the pastry cream and gently fold the meringue and evenly mix the meringue until you’ve reached a silky and smooth texture.
*Important tips for filling the ramequins successfully*Fill the ramequins only half-full with a ladle. Bang the ramequins on a kitchen cloth (folded in four), on the counter, so that the mixture hits the bottom of the ramequins and the soufflé mixture hits all the corners of the ramequins. This will allow the soufflé to rise evenly. Repeat with all ramequins.
Now fill all ramequins right at the very top with the remaining mixture. Remove any excess of the mixture with a knife and wiping it off with one clean sweep so that you have a nice even and straigh top.
Create a little ridge. Run the tip of your thumb around the edges of the ramequin. Repat with all ramequins. The ridge stops the soufflé from hanging over the side as it starts to rise.
Pop the ramequins into the oven for about 15-20 minutes. Watch them rise!
After 15-20 minutes, your soufflés must have ‘love handles’ which is a sign of a perfect soufflé.
Sprinkle a little bit of icing sugar over the soufflés. Soufflés won’t stay up very long, so serve them immediately, nice and warm.
Share and enjoy!