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Verses from my Kitchen: Raspberry Soufflé

April 16, 2011

Raspberry Soufflé


The work day and week has ended and it's Friday night. I'm driving up my street to the house on the left and my spot on the right side of the driveway. It's familiar. It's home. As soon as my key smoothly slides into the door it's as if I'm unlocking the weekend and lifting the weight of the world off my shoulders. Be gone.


Some people despise routines. I, on the other hand, love that familiar tone. Sure, it's nice to break free and try new things and be spontaneous, but it's also nice knowing what's happening without having to ask. Like Friday nights in my kitchen and dinner with my wife. It's the small stuff that matters to me. A thousand days worth of small stuff that fills up my memory and fuels me. All those yesterdays.

Nothing beats a dinner date with my wife. It's the perfect start to the weekend and the kind of jump start I need. I make dinner and drink wine and we talk about the week that's quickly put in the rear view mirror. Farther removed by the minute. My wife sits high atop the table in the kitchen and always comments about the aroma that peels from the stove and straight to her. And we laugh, as only we do. And I'm happy.







Tonight she wanted Chicken Parmesan, which is perfectly fine with me because I've made it so many times that I could do it blindfolded. Yet lost in the monotony of it is the happiness that the process brings me. Nothing takes away the stress of the week like the sounds made in the kitchen and the smell of fresh herbs and garlic in front of me. It's medication for me.


So while that was under control I thought about making dessert. I love warm desserts, especially when the weather takes on a course of its own. We're in the midst of fluctuating temperatures and an identity crisis. One moment it's hot, the next it's cold. Like the moment the clock welcomed the weekend. Instant wind and temperature drop. Solutions around the corner.


There are countless options to choose from when the weather dips: puddings, warm cakes, crumble or betty or cobbler, and of course soufflés. Glorious and beautiful and sensual soufflés. My mind quickly went from daydreaming to prep work. The quickest turnaround I could imagine, especially because my movements slow to a halt on weekends.


I thought about making a lemon soufflé, partly because it reminds me of spring and also my love of citrus desserts is legendary. Ok, it's known inside the walls of this house. Anyway, I had some raspberries left from the market and some raspberry jam in the fridge so it was meant to happen. Raspberry Soufflé.


I was fast at work making the soufflé and dreaming about how beautiful it would be! One problem. As the time ticked away on the clock my soufflé didn't want to rise. I sat there, like a child at the window wanting to join his friends playing outside but instead stuck inside and hopeless. I was eager. I was anxious. I closed my eyes and said a prayer to the soufflé Gods and like magic, or divine intervention, it started to lift from its slumber and stretch....and stretch.  


There is something about a soufflé that reminds me of black and white movies and romance during the golden era. An act of chivalry and a moment of elegance. Two people sharing one spoon and tucking away at the mound of heaven in a bowl in front of them. Lost in time. In each other.

Much like my wife and I. Every beautiful weekend.


From my kitchen to yours, happy eating!



Raspberry Souffle

The Goods:
  • 1 pint of raspberries (sauce)
  • 1/3 cup icing sugar (sauce)
  • 2 tbsp. butter, room temp.
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup raspberry jam, seedless
  • 1/8 cup cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp. water
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/3 cup superfine sugar
  • icing sugar, dusting
  • raspberries, garnish
Prep:
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Make the raspberry sauce by placing the first two ingredients in the blender and pureeing until smooth. Push the sauce through a sieve and discard the seeds. Keep the sauce for later.
  2. Place the jam in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and water and whisk until you have smooth syrup, add to the jam and stir. Stir constantly until the mixture resembles paste. Remove from heat.
  3. Brush room temperature butter around the ramekins and in upward strokes around the sides. Add in the granulated sugar and shake until coated and discard unused sugar. Place in the freezer for 5 minutes. Repeat the process a second time and place in the freezer again. Using a pastry brush, paint upward strokes with your raspberry sauce around the ramekin (4-6 strokes). Apply liberally but try not to disturb the sugar. Return to the freezer.
  4. Using a large mixing bowl, whisk the egg whites and 1 tbsp. of the superfine sugar on high speed. As soon as the whites begin to thicken, add the remainder of the superfine sugar and continue to whisk on high until until you have stiff peaks.
  5. Mix the raspberry jam puree with one-third of the egg white mixture by folding them together. Do this gently as you're trying to create a light and airy mixture. Fold in the remainder of the egg white mixture and fold until combined.
  6. Remove the ramekins from the freezer and fill with mixture to the rim. Using a palette knife, cut the mixture across the top ensuring a level top.
  7. Place in the oven for 12-15 minutes or until the souffle rises by almost double the size. Remove from oven and dust with icing sugar and garnish with a raspberry.
  8. Serves 2-3.

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30 Comments:

At April 16, 2011 at 9:35 AM , Blogger Mardi @eatlivetravelwrite said...

Yum that looks wicked! Interesting how it looks like there is a layer of bicsuit or something on top - I've never seen soufflés rise quite like that but I love how they always turn out different. Best thing about soufflé is that they always taste fab even if they don't rise ;-)

 
At April 16, 2011 at 10:44 AM , Blogger A Thought For Food said...

How divine!!! You did a wonderful job with these souffles. We should have a little dinner party... i'll do savory and you'll do sweet. Deal?

 
At April 16, 2011 at 10:48 AM , Blogger Michael Lewicki said...

Thanks Mardi! I think the top layer looks like that because it's exposed directly to the heat so it crisps up ever so slightly. And you're right, risen on deflated they all taste great!

Done deal Brian! We could do a souffle party, forget fondue. Thanks!

 
At April 16, 2011 at 11:15 AM , Anonymous SMITH BITES said...

for YEARS i avoided souffles like the plague, believing they were too difficult, persnickety and just plain out of my league . . . and then i made my first one and literally laughed at how ridiculously easy they are. and i'd say your wife is a very lucky woman!

 
At April 16, 2011 at 6:17 PM , Blogger Sippity Sup said...

I can hear that easy, comfortable laughter from your kitchen to my ears in Los Angeles. GREG

 
At April 17, 2011 at 2:42 AM , Anonymous Gourmet Getaways said...

This has got to be a top 9 winner!!! It is so gorgeous!!

Beautiful job, I wish one of the spoons tucking in was mine :)

 
At April 17, 2011 at 8:45 AM , Blogger Lizzy said...

Gorgeous, perfect souffles!!! What a marvelous dessert, Michael...you've been buzzed :)

 
At April 17, 2011 at 11:17 AM , Blogger SweetSavoryPlanet said...

What a beautiful, little raspberry souffle. Almost too good to eat!

 
At April 17, 2011 at 12:28 PM , Blogger Pola said...

Love your blog and I wanted to pass something along... An award is waiting for you here http://cookingitalianinthemidwest.blogspot.com/2011/04/awards-galore.html. Hope you enjoy it!

 
At April 17, 2011 at 2:59 PM , Blogger Dee Dee's Delights said...

This sound great, I am hosting a linky party called Sunday Buffet, Your welcome to add these to the Buffet line! http://deedeesdelights.blogspot.com/p/sunday-buffet.html

 
At April 17, 2011 at 9:53 PM , OpenID livininthekitchen said...

This is super cool, it rose so beautifully and the lines are awesome.

 
At April 18, 2011 at 5:20 AM , Anonymous Jennifer (Delicieux) said...

Your wife is one lucky woman! What a gorgeous soufflé!

My boyfriend and I do something similar. When I cook he sits in the kitchen and talks to me and comments on the aromas as I cook.

 
At April 18, 2011 at 5:47 AM , Blogger Adriana said...

What a beautiful post! That souffle is stunning, to say the least. Congrats on your Top 9!

 
At April 18, 2011 at 6:33 AM , Anonymous Eftychia said...

Delicious dessert. Very nice post, excellent photos. Thanks for sharing!

 
At April 18, 2011 at 10:27 AM , Blogger Wit,wok and wisdom said...

Hey Michael,
Lovely post and a lovely souffle!Your Top 9 is well-deserved...Congratulations!:)

Cheers,
Wit,wok&wisdom

 
At April 18, 2011 at 10:57 AM , Blogger Ah Tze said...

I love this Raspberry Souffle, the pinkish is lovely, moreover there are more work to alternate the colour, Congtz, you deserved to be in the Top 9!

 
At April 18, 2011 at 12:10 PM , Anonymous Amy @ ElephantEats said...

These look delicious!!! What size ramekins did you use?

 
At April 18, 2011 at 1:11 PM , Anonymous Franklin from Dine Delish said...

That Souffle really lifted well. Looks amazing enough to eat!

 
At April 18, 2011 at 2:56 PM , Blogger Lemons and Lavender said...

The writing, the photos...well done on every level. I'm sure the souffle tasted good, too! Such a joy to read your blog.
Lori

 
At April 18, 2011 at 3:22 PM , Blogger Inga´s Haven said...

very pretty - if I had rasberry I would make this right now !!

 
At April 18, 2011 at 3:56 PM , Blogger Diethood.com said...

Congrats on top 9, Mike! I can see why it's up there... this is one beautiful, perfect souffle.

 
At April 18, 2011 at 4:14 PM , Blogger Sarah (Snippets of Thyme) said...

That is such a sweet looking souffle! I would love to try it. Wonderful photography and a heartfelt story. Congratulations on the top 9

 
At April 18, 2011 at 4:24 PM , Blogger Georgia | The Comfort of Cooking said...

This is a gorgeous souffle, and I love that you used raspberry instead of the traditional chocolate! Great job on this. Thanks for sharing! You have a beautiful blog and I'm looking forward to exploring your recipes. :)

 
At April 18, 2011 at 7:42 PM , Anonymous sheryl said...

What attracted my attention is how beautifully you photographed your dish. It looks absolutely delicious. I've always been afraid to make souffle's. Your has risen so perfectly!

 
At April 18, 2011 at 10:35 PM , Anonymous The Foodist said...

This is real food art !!!
Very well done, Bravssimo !!!

 
At April 20, 2011 at 11:15 AM , Anonymous Kristen said...

That is such a beautiful creation - love the stripes of red raspberry and your post is so eloquent.

 
At April 20, 2011 at 1:24 PM , Anonymous Stephanie said...

Absolutely beautiful! They look so different from typical souffles, and it's certainly a good different. I will definitely have to try these out soon.

 
At April 20, 2011 at 11:09 PM , Blogger Laurie @simplyscratch said...

Beautiful! :)

 
At April 21, 2011 at 1:35 AM , Blogger Cozy Home Scenes said...

I know better than looking at food blogs late at night when I'm hungry. That looks very good. And your wife is very lucky to have a husband to cook for her. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

 
At April 21, 2011 at 12:28 PM , Blogger Chris Otto said...

I have to comment on the Prose, sure the food looks good but I was just enamored with the narrative. Absolutely beautiful! Thank you!

 

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