The ultimate dinner party dessert, the perfect soufflé has edges that are puffed like a pillow with a middle that melts in your mouth. It also has a reputation for being tricky to make, but if you follow the simple steps below we promise that pistachio soufflé perfection will be yours before long. The recipe and pictures are by Littleloaf for WhyNut.
For the pastry cream: 3 large free range egg yolks
35g golden caster sugar
15g plain flour sifted
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
40g WhyNut pistachio paste
For the soufflés : 25g unsalted butter melted
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tbsp golden caster sugar
1 quantity of pastry cream (see above)
3 large free range egg whites
35g golden caster sugar
For the pastry cream
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and caster sugar until pale and thick, about 3 minutes. Sift in the flour and vanilla paste and whisk for a further minute, making sure there are no lumps.
- In a medium saucepan, bring 100ml milk to the boil then remove immediately from the heat. Leave to cool for one minute, then gradually pour the warm milk into the egg yolk mixture. Return the whole lot to the saucepan and cook for about 3 minutes over a medium heat - whisking continuously - until thickened. Remove from the heat, cover with a layer of cling film to prevent a skin forming and set aside to cool.
- Once the pastry cream is cool, whisk together the pistachio paste and remaining 20ml milk then fold together until smooth.
For the soufflés
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C.
- Brush four ramekins with melted butter, dragging the pastry brush in upwards strokes (this will help the soufflés to rise). In a small bowl, combine the cocoa powder and caster sugar, then use to dust the inside of each ramekin.
- In a large, clean bowl, whisk the egg whites until firm. Add the sugar and whisk again until stiff, glossy peaks form.
- Using a metal spoon, stir one quarter of the whisked egg whites into the pistachio pastry cream (this will help to loosen the mixture) before carefully folding in the remaining egg whites.
- Divide the mixture between your prepared ramekins, then use a palette knife to level the tops. Wipe the rim of each ramekin clean by placing your thumb on the rim and rotating it. This will help to ensure an even rise.
- Bake for 10 – 12 minutes, until golden and risen. Remove from the oven, dust with icing sugar and serve immediately
- Use eggs at room temperature for the best results. It’s hard to achieve the perfect lift with cold egg whites.
- Dusting the ramekins with a mixture of cocoa and sugar helps achieve extra lift and also adds a lovely crunchy texture and sweet, chocolaty flavour.
- This recipe uses an equal number of egg whites and yolks. To make an even lighter soufflé, use one or two additional egg whites and save the yolks for ice cream (link to ice cream recipe).
- For the ultimate indulgence, place four scoops of ice cream (chocolate, hazelnut or even pistachio for a double hit of nutty flavour) on a tray and freeze until firm. Fill each ramekin half way with soufflé mixture, top with a frozen ball of ice cream then continue as per the recipe above.
- Chocolate and pistachio are perfect partners. Try stirring a handful of chocolate chips into the batter or serve each soufflé with an individual jug of hot chocolate sauce or a scoop of cold ice cream.
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