Rhubarb Soufflé with Rhubarb crisps


Rhubarb Soufflé with rhubarb crisp

Rhubarb Soufflé with rhubarb crisp

This pink and delicate soufflé belies the flavour punch given by the  reduced fruit puree.  Fantastic for entertaining not only because your guests will be seriously impressed ,but  because  they can be prepared up to  the cooking stage a few hours in advance without impacting their ability to rise.  You cam make your hard work look completely effortless! This same recipe can be used for any summer fruits.

Serves 4

200g fresh rhubarb

½ as vanilla pod slit

2 tablespoons water

1 tablespoon cornflour

100g caster sugar

2 medium egg whites

50g dark chocolate

optional – a tiny drop of cochineal or pink food colouring

butter or oil for preparing the ramekins

4 x 100ml ramekins

Prepare the Ramekins:

Grate the chocolate finely. Butter or oil the ramekins lightly and coat the sides of each with the grated chocolate.  Set the prepared ramekins onto a flat baking sheet.

Cooking the Fruit Puree:

You are aiming for the rhubarb soufflé to be a pretty shade of pink  so chose the pinkest stalks that you can. Roughly chop the rhubarb and put it into a saucepan with 1 tablespoon of the water. Cook gently until the rhubarb is soft and then stir to break it up to a pulp. Bubble the puree for 5-6 minutes until it is a thick and jammy consistency. if the Puree is a bit on the green side then add pink food colouring in tiny amounts only and mixing in very well, until the right shade is accomplished.

Put the cornflour into a small dish and stir in the second tablespoon of water. Add this slaked cornflour to the rhubarb and mix well. Bubble the puree for a further three minutes or so to cook the cornflour and further thicken the puree. The cornflour acts as a stabilizer for the soufflé, so when it comes out of the oven you should have bit of time before it starts to sink ensuring your guests get the wow factor.  Spoon the puree into a large mixing bowl, cover and set aside.

Cover the Rhubarb puree with a scrumpled piece of parchment paper.

Cover the Rhubarb puree with a scrumpled piece of parchment paper. Make sure the paper is in contact with the pure so that a skin does not form

You can leave the rhubarb puree at this stage, covered, until you are ready to complete the soufflés. You could even store it for a day covered in the fridge.

Put the egg whites into a large clean mixing bowl and whisk to soft peaks. Add the sugar in about three additions, whisking well between each until the meringue is glossy and stiff.

Stir a quarter of the meringue into the rhubarb jam and mix well to combine. Tip the rest of the meringue into the bowl and fold into the rhubarb.

Divide the soufflé between the prepared ramekins, giving each dish a sharp tap to settle the mixture.  Level the tops of the soufflés by running a pallet knife, or the back of a kitchen knife across the top of the ramekins removing any excess mix. To ensure an even rise run a finger between the soufflé and the lip of the ramekin to release the mixture from the sides.

NB – you can prepare these desserts to this stage a couple of hours in advance without impacting their ability to rise. Loosely cover the prepared uncooked soufflés (make sure the covering doesn’t stick to the soufflé tops) and put them on their baking tray into the fridge.

Cooking the Soufflés:

Cook in the centre of the oven for 15 minutes. They are cooked when they are well risen and slightly browned on top.

Open the oven door slowly to prevent a rush of cooler air from beginning the deflation process.

Serve at once with pouring cream. You could serve with a rhubarb compote or as I have here with Rhubarb crisps.


Scaling up the recipe and using other fruit varieties:

If you are needing to make 6 serving or you ramekins are a bit larger simply add one additional egg white to the above recipe. For 8 servings you will need to double the entire 2 egg recipe above.

If you are making this soufflé with other summer fruits just make sure that you have a minimum of 100ml to a maximum of 130ml of reduced puree  for the 2 egg recipe.

Rhubarb Crisps

2 thick rhubarb stalks

Sugar syrup , the drinks mixer variety is good or make your own as follows:

Mix 100g caster sugar with 50 ml water in a small pan. dissolve the sugar over a low heat and then increase the temperature and simmer the sugar syrup for 5 minutes or until it is a syrupy consistency. cool and use.

Line a flat baking tray with parchment paper, waxy side up.

Heat the oven to low – gas 2/150c.

Paring rhubarb strips with a potato peeler

Using a potato peeler pare thin long strips of rhubarb

Using a potato peeler pare long thin strips of rhubarb . brush both sides of the rhubarb strips with the sugar syrup and lay them on the prepared baking tray.

Brush the rhubarb strips with sugar syrup

Brush the rhubarb strips with sugar syrup and place onto the parchment lined flat baking sheet,

Cook for about an hour or until the rhubarb is dried and comes away from the parchment paper when it is slightly cooled.

Cool and store in a airtight tin.

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