Monday, November 26, 2012

Passion Fruit Soufflé

A soufflé is a lightly baked cake made with egg yolks and beaten egg whites combined with various other ingredients and served as a savory main dish or sweetened as a dessert. The main ingredients are mainly eggs. You can whip up this dessert in less than half an hour and it is such a light dessert with few calories.
The only set back is that you have to serve the souffle immediately straight from the oven. Soufflés are not supposed to be made in advance because when it comes out of the oven, a soufflé should be puffed up and fluffy, and it will generally fall or collapse after 5 or 10 minutes.
A soufflé is made from two basic components; a flavoured base and egg whites beaten to a soft peak meringue. The base provides the flavour and the whites provide the "lift".

To begin, for practice, this passion fruit soufflé is easy to make and taste really good.

Passion Fruit Soufflés

Adapted from Neil Perry

3 egg yolks
37 g + 37g Sugar
45 ml strained Passion Fruit Juice
3 egg whites
You can use a mixer or hand whisk for this recipe.
Set the oven at 190 C.
In a bowl, or you can use a mixer, cream the egg yolks with the first 37g sugar, until pale and the sugar has dissolved.
Add the passionfruit juice, mix and set aside.
In a separate clean bowl or clean mixer bowl, whisk the egg whites with a tiny pinch of salt. 
When you are ½ way to peaks forming, add ½ the remaining sugar, followed by the rest shortly after.
Whisk to firm peaks but be careful not to overbeat them.
Fold 1/3 of the whites into the yolks then carefully fold through the remaining.
Spoon the mixture into a buttered and sugared soufflé mould or ramekin
Bake at 190C for 12 minutes.
Serve immediately with ice cream. (optional)
Makes about 8 to 9 small ramekins of soufflé.


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

PROFITEROLES: Choux pastry with Vanilla Bean ice cream topped with warm Valrhona chocolate sauce

I have been asked to make this for the longest time but I kept pushing it back as I was too lazy. I like to make everything from scratch and for this particular dessert means I have to make three items. Namely; Vanilla bean ice cream, choux pastry and chocolate sauce and not forgetting to toast the sliced almonds. That was the very reason I kept procrastinating.

After having lunch at Le Bistrot Du Sommelier with a friend, I was inspired to make this for my family. Their profiteroles are out of this world and I had to make this at home for my love ones.

These choux pastry are soft and light, sandwiched with the homemade cold Vanilla bean ice cream, topped with warm Valrhona thick chocolate sauce, sprinkle with some toasted almonds and icing sugar will definitely bring you straight to almost heaven!

Everyone was happy of course.


Choux Pastry - 30 to 40 choux

150 ml water
125 ml milk
100 g unsalted butter
150g self raising flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
5 eggs

Preheat oven at 180 C with fan. (350 F)
Sift the flour and salt into a bowl.
Place the milk, water and sugar into a pan and set over a low heat.
Once the sugar and salt has dissolved add the butter.
As soon as the butter has melted, turn the fire up to bring to a rolling boil.
Turn down the fire to low heat then tip in all the flour and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon. As soon as the mixture starts to come away from the side of the pan and looks dry, stop beating and tip the mixture into the stand mixer.
On medium low speed, beat the mixture and let the steam escape.
Gradually beat in the eggs, one at a time, mixing well between each addition, until you have a smooth paste and is well incorporated.
At the end finish with high speed for a minute.
Line a baking sheet with greaseproof paper or silpat.
Spoon the choux pastry into a piping bag with a cut tip. (I did not use a piping nozzle, you can use if you want)
Now pipe 4 to 5 cm rounds (1 1/2 inches) onto the baking sheet, spaced it well apart. Level the peaked tops with the tip of a wet finger then bake for 180 C (350 F) for 15 minutes.
Turn up the temperature to 200 C ( 390 F) and continue to bake for another 5 to 7 minutes till golden brown. Cool on wire rack.

Warm Valrhona Chocolate Sauce

250 g Valrhona chocolate (55%) or any good dark chocolate - chopped if it is a big piece
150 g full cream milk

Boil the milk to a rolling boil. Turn the heat off
Immediately, add the chocolate pieces and stir till melted.
Keep warm, put the pot of sauce on a another pot of very hot water. (no fire please, bain marie) 
Alternatively, microwave to warm up the sauce for a 10 seconds shot each time on medium high heat. 

Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
You have to make this one day ahead.
Alternatively, you can buy good ice cream. I suggest Haagen Dazs if you have to buy.

Cut the choux pastries into half.
Put two bottom pastries onto a dessert plate, fill one scoop of Vanilla ice cream (homemade or store bought, mine is homemade with 2 vanilla pods) onto each pastry.
Cover with the top pastries and spoon warm chocolate sauce onto the pastries generously.
Put a few toasted almonds onto the chocolate sauce and lastly sprinkle icing sugar on to the top of the pastries and serve immediately.

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