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Fig Armagnac souffle

Fig Armagnac souffle
Los Angeles Times

Dear SOS: Last year, the restaurant at the Hotel Bel-Air offered a fig souffle with a pistachio creme anglaise. I would love to have the recipe. The creme anglaise was magical. JUDI BIKEL West Hollywood Dear Judi: The souffle is ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour, 15 minutes, plus soaking and chilling time | Makes 4 souffles

Pistachio creme anglaise

  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup finely ground pistachios
  • 3 egg yolks

Step 1Combine the cream, sugar and pistachios in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and remove from heat.

Step 2In a small bowl, beat the egg yolks. Gradually whisk some of the cream mixture into the yolks, then pour the mixture back into the saucepan. Cook until the sauce reaches 170 to 180 degrees and coats the back of a spoon. Strain the sauce into a bowl and set it in a larger bowl filled with ice water to cool. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing it to the surface of the sauce. Refrigerate until chilled.

Fig souffle

  • 5 1/2 tablespoons Armagnac
  • 3 dried figs, stems trimmed
  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon water, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar, divided
  • 4 fresh Black Mission figs (about 3 ounces), stems trimmed
  • 3 3/4 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 6 egg whites, room temperature

Step 1Warm the Armagnac in a small saucepan. Remove from heat, add the dried figs and soak for 2 hours. Meanwhile, prepare the pistachio creme anglaise (above). Drain the figs and reserve the Armagnac.

Step 2Combine 1 cup water with one-half cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Add the fresh figs and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Drain and discard the poaching liquid. Puree the fresh figs and the dried figs in a food processor. Force the puree through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl; discard the solids. Add the cornstarch, 3 tablespoons sugar and 1 tablespoon water to the bowl and stir to combine. Transfer the mixture to a small saucepan and heat over low heat until it reaches a simmer and thickens. Remove from heat and cool. (At this point, the mixture can be covered and refrigerated for up to a day.)

Step 3Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Butter 4 (4-by-2-inch) souffle dishes with the 1 tablespoon of butter and sprinkle them with 1 tablespoon sugar. Place the dishes on a baking sheet.

Step 4In a large bowl, whip the egg whites, gradually adding the remaining half cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, until stiff peaks form. Mix one-third of the egg whites into the fig souffle base. Carefully fold in the remaining egg whites until completely blended.

Step 5Spoon the mixture into the souffle dishes, leveling it with a spatula and running a thumb around the inner edge of each dish. Bake about 12 minutes. Serve immediately, pouring the pistachio creme anglaise over each serving at the table.

Note: Prepare the creme anglaise while the dried figs are soaking. You can make the creme anglaise and the souffle base a day ahead. The souffles are the size served at the restaurant; you may find they serve two.


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