Quick, simple, and elegant. The texture of this soufflé is agreeably chewy, from the presence of the chopped almonds, and the flavour hit from the liqueur contained within the biscuit base gets a thumbs-up every time. As a trick whenever making individual soufflés, the presence of an alcohol-soaked layer of cake is something always to remember - with the layer of cake either being put in the centre of the soufflé, as Alain Ducasse advises, or in the base, as in this recipe (which is marginally less fiddly). Pierre Hermé uses a variation on this theme with his light chocolate sponge discs, for use in either chocolate tarts or chocolate soufflés. However you prefer to do it, it introduces an 'event' into the dish which otherwise can seem too much on one note.
For two individual soufflés.
Ingredients: 40g slivered Almonds; 1 tablespoon of Sugar (or Splenda - works just as well in this recipe); 150 ml Milk; 15g Butter; half tablespoon of Plain Flour; 2 Eggs; 6 Amaretto Biscuits; 2 tablespoons of Amaretto Liqueur; half a teaspoon of good Vanilla Essence.
1. Heat the oven to 220 degrees C.
2. Put the Almonds in a small saucepan, along with half the Milk, and half of the Sugar (or Splenda). Briefly bring to the boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for a minute or two. Then leave to cool down.
3. In a double-boiler or zimmertopf, melt the Butter and stir into it the flour; using a hand whisk, gently stir in the remaining Milk. Heat, stirring occasionally until the mixture thickens (about five minutes) then beat in the two Egg Yolks.
4. Combine this mixture with the Almond-Milk-Sugar mixture; add the Vanilla Essence and half of the Amaretto Liqueur, and process the whole thing for a minute in a liquidizer or food processor.
5. Divide the Amaretto Biscuits and the remaining Liqueur between two greased ramekins (or sprayed with Trennwax) , carefully spooning the liquid so that it is absorbed by the Biscuits.
6. Beat the Egg Whites until firm, along with the remaining Sugar (or Splenda) ; fold in the soufflé base, and divide the mixture between the two ramekins, on top of the soaked biscuits. Put the ramekins in a bain marie and bake for 10 minutes in the pre-heated oven