Thursday 5 November 2009

Recipe: Apple and Calvados Souffle

Along with grapes, the other glut that we're currently experiencing is apples. Vast quantities of them...and I'm not complaining. Chicken pieces sautéed with garlic and then baked with apple & thyme; thin-crust pies, filled with apple and guinea-fowl, and a sage flavoured cream; strawberry and apple tarts; apple and vanilla tarts, with brandy; apple and cinnamon cake....and now, an apple and Calvados soufflé which is both light and delicious, but with an unexpected edge.

This recipe has the additional benefit that it uses only egg whites, not the yolks, and so is another one for the list of dishes which eats into the ever-present egg-white mountain which lurks in a plastic container at the back of the fridge!

For two individual soufflés.

Ingredients: 2 apples (my preference is for something pink and robust like Gala or Pink Lady); 1 oz butter; 2 oz +1 tablespoon sugar; 4 sponge fingers (or thin pieces of sponge cake - something which will readily absorb liquid); 2 tablespoons calvados; 4 egg whites; icing sugar (to serve).


1. Grease (or Trennwax) two individual ramekins. Line the base of each ramekin with the peices of sponge finger (or sponge cake) and add a spoonful of Calvados to each ramekin, trying to soak the pieces of sponge evenly.

2. Melt the butter in a small pan, and add to this the apples, peeled, cored and finely diced, and the 2 oz of sugar. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, for ten minutes or so, until the apple is good and soft. Allow to cool slightly and then purée in the food processor.

3. Beat the egg whites until quite stiff, then add the remaining tablespoon of sugar and beat for a further ten seconds or so.

4. Stir a quarter of the egg whites into the apple mixture, then fold in the rest of the egg whites and divide the mixture between the two ramekins. Place the ramekins in a bain marie and bake 15 minutes in a 220 degree C oven.

Serve straight from the oven, after dusting the tops with icing sugar.

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