This is a recipe I'm astonished to discover I haven't posted already, so highly does it rank in my list of top-ten desserts. It comes from one of those anonymous recipe books ('Your 100 All-time Favourite Dishes' or 'The Family Circle Recipe Collection' or something similar) which don't promise much from the outside but in practice often contain some absolute gems. This is definitely one such.
Don't be tempted to substitute ground almonds for the slivered variety - I've tried it (on the basis that they all go into the blender jar anyway, and so why not go straight for ground almonds and cut out the blender step entirely) and it doesn't work; even after being blended, the slivered almonds have a splendidly chewy texture which is completely missing from the ground almond version. The combination of texture, along with the heady flavour-combination of vanilla and amaretto make this an absolute winner!
For two individual soufflés.
Ingredients: 40g slivered almonds; 1 tablespoon sugar (or Splenda - works equally as well in this recipe); 150 ml milk; 15g butter; half a tablespoon of plain flour; 2 eggs; 6 amaretto biscuits; 2 tablespoons of Amaretto liqueur; half a teaspoon of good quality vanilla essence.
1. Heat the oven to 220 degrees C.
2. Put the almonds in a small saucepan, along with half the sugar and half the milk. Bring to the boil, and then simmer gently for two minutes, before leaving to cool.
3. In a double boiler or simmertopf melt the butter, then gently whisk in the flour and remaining milk. Heat, stirring occasionally, until the mixture thickens (about five minutes), then stir in the two egg yolks.
4. Combine this mixture with the almond-milk-sugar mixture, add the vanilla essence and half of the liqueur and liquidize the whole lot for a minute.
5. Divide the amaretto biscuits between two individual ramekins which have been greased (or sprayed with Trennwax), and soak the biscuits in the remaining liqueur.
6. Beat the egg whites with the remaining sugar (or Splenda), and fold the soufflé base into the beaten egg white. Spoon this mixture into the prepared ramekins, place them in a bain marie and bake for ten minutes in the pre-heated oven.