When I started my kitchen career, soufflé was the top of the dessert menu for guests and chefs alike. As you can probably imagine, this was not immediately motivating, because I didn’t want to expose myself to the risk of failing. The guests waited so long for their soufflé to be served and a second try was therefore not really an option. In many restaurants a soufflé dessert was an essential part of the meal and so I had to learn how to make a proper soufflé. It didn’t hurt, on the contrary, today I am a big fan of soufflés and sometimes my guests can enjoy a freshly baked soufflé at home.
Baking a soufflé properly
Whether one should actually use the word bake or poach for soufflé is not important at this point. The fact is, the molds with the soufflé mass are placed in a water bath, because the steam produced supports the soufflé in baking fluffy and high. But before we are ready, here is a short word about the soufflé mass. The base of a soufflé usually consists of a kind of a base mass, such as a custard or semolina, but sometimes it is also made with curd cheese or sour cream. Freshly beaten egg whites are then added to the base mass and special care must be taken to ensure that the beaten egg whites are still creamy and not flaky. In this way, both masses can be combined better and faster without losing volume. What counts here is: what is lost once, does not come back. If the soufflé then bakes beautifully high in the oven, it should not be baked completely, this prevents it from falling in quickly when serving (the fear of every cook).
A soufflé to impress
Baking a soufflé will in most cases already lead to open mouths, but there is still room for improvement. For this recipe I wanted to use some of the fresh lavender from our garden. Lavender has long had the reputation of moth balls on the tongue. In my opinion this is complete nonsense and is only due to an overdose of lavender. However, if you carefully integrate the floral aromas of lavender, lavender can give a wonderful character. As stone fruit is in season and peaches, plums and nectarines are filling the markets, I wanted to work with the nectarine and lavender. Here it didn’t really take much effort because the nectarine just needed a little refinement. So, I cooked a caramel and caramelized the nectarines with some butter. Then I added freshly plucked lavender flowers and that was it. The lavender was thus able to carefully pass on its aroma to the nectarine. The lavender nectarines were then first placed in the soufflé forms, because I wanted to integrate the compote directly to the soufflé. This way you have a complete dessert after the plunge, simply delicious.
Skyr Soufflé with Lavender Nectarines
4 Persons45 Minutes
- 2 Nectarines
- 3 tsp Sugar
- 20 ml Water
- 25 g Butter
- 2 Lavender Stems with blossom
For the lavender nectarines, first cut the nectarines into 1 cm slices and then into dices. Heat up a pan and boil the sugar and water until the sugar caramelizes. Now add the nectarines and butter to caramelize. Gently toss the pan and remove from the heat. Finally, pluck the lavender flowers on top and place the lavender nectarines in greased soufflé molds so that the bottom is covered and set aside.
- 200 g Skyr
- 2 Eggs
- 1 tsp Starch
- 80 g Sugar
- Vanilla & Salt to taste
For the Skyr soufflé, first put the Skyr in a bowl and separate the eggs, adding the yolks to the Skyr. Then season with vanilla. Now put the egg white in a mixing bowl, add a pinch of salt and only part of the sugar. This way the meringue can be whipped better. When the meringue has gained volume, add the remaining sugar bit by bit. The meringue is ready as soon as the it is stiff but still creamy. Then carefully combine the two masses by first carefully folding only 1/3 of the meringue under the Skyr Mix and only then adding the rest. Finally, fill the soufflé molds with the mixture, put it in a cocotte and fill the base 1.5cm high with water. The soufflés are then baked in the oven at 190° C for 25 minutes, although the time can be reduced for smaller molds.
Plating is very simple, just turn the soufflé over on a plate and you’re done, because the lavender nectarines are already included.
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