Nigella's Pistachio Souffle
This was a very unusual souffle adapted from Nigella Lawson's fantastic book ''How to be a domestic goddess''. I love Nigella and this book, but I wasn't that satisfied with how they turned out. I think it's because I didn't ilke the pistachios I had. But I love pistachios!!! These had a bit of a weird smell, so that might be it...The souffle I once posted is my Chef's recipe and I will stick to it, because it's the best one ever and it rises incredibly high.
Here I am sharing with you the recipe, so you can try it if you feel like it! The chocolate surprise in the middle was a good idea and the souffles are very light and it's great if you have leftover egg whites (which I always do).
30g soft unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing souffle cups
60g caster sugar, plus extra for dusting souffle cups and 1 Tbsp for the egg whites (feel free to add more, because at the end they are not sweet at all)
20g plain flour
150 ml full-fat milk
4 large eggs separated
100g unsalted pistachios, ground
2 drops almond extract
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp orange-flower water
5 larges egg whites
pinch of salt
6 x 10g good quality dark chocolate
6 x 250ml ramekins or souffle dishes
Preheat the oven at 200C / gas mark 6 and put in a baking sheet. Use a little butter to grease the ramekins and then dust with sugar, tipping out the excess.
Put the flour in a saucepan and add a little milk, just to blend. Then, stirring (whisking), add the rest of the milk and 60g sugar. Whisk over medium heat until it comes to boiling point, then whisk for 30 seconds and take off the heat, by which time it should be very thick. Let it cool a little and add the yolks gradually. Beat in the butter.
Add the gound pistachios, the almond and vanilla extracts and the orange-flower water, and mix in well.
Then, whisk all 5 egg whites together with a pinch of salt until soft peaks form. Sprinkle over the tablespoon of sugar and then carry on whisking until thick and glossy. Lighten the mixture with some - up to a quarter - of the whites. Don't be afraid of this, just splodge them into the saucepan (where the pistachio mixture is) and stir briskly. Now fold in carefully the rest of the whipped whites. Ok, this part here took me a while to understand. Isn't it kinda weird to just add unbeated whites like that?! We are talking about the 4 whites that were separeted.
Pour 1cm of the mixture into each ramekin, then lie chocolate pieces on top and pour over the remaining mixture. Open the oven and as quickly but unhurriedly as possible, arrange the dishes on the heated baking sheet (which I forgot to do). Immediately, turn the oven down to 180C / gas mark 4 and bake for 12-15 minutes, when the tops will be scorched gold and risen high above the ramekins' rims. Remove from the oven, dust with icing sugar and serve absolutely at once (and I had to take photos). But one note of reassurance: you can open the door oven during baking; they won't fall just because you've got the temerity to check in them ;)
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