Saturday, February 14, 2015

Flourless Dark Chocolate Mini-Soufflés with Grand Marnier Cream




Here's a valentine to you from us. That's Victoria Abbott, in case you are blinded by our dollar store glitter!  


We love soufflés, especially chocolate soufflés, and we love flourless cakes too. This recipe seems to capture both elements and it seems just right for Valentine’s Day too. 

It’s an adaptation of a recipe from the Canadian magazine, Chateleine.  MJ’s a big fan of their recipes. Many family favorites have come from those pages.

The original recipe had hazelnut liqueur which would have been awesome, but we had this Grand Marnier, so …   You could use other liqueur as well: Bailey’s or whatever. Next time we have Frangelico in the house, we’ll make that version.



Here's all you need:


Butter to grease soufflé dishes
1 - 2 tbsp granulated sugar – to dust the soufflé dishes
3 tbsp sugar for mixture
200 grams of good-quality 70 % chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup whipping cream (35 %)
1 tsp good quality vanilla
3 extra-large eggs, and 3 egg whites, all at room temperature
Optional: Pinch of sea salt (we used Himalayan pink)
Raspberries for garnish

Grand Marnier Cream  
1/3 cup whipping cream
2 -3 tablespoons Grand Marnier
1 tsp good vanilla

Here's all you do:


Pre-heat the oven to 350 Degrees

Butter the inside of six ramekins. Coat with sugar (1/2 to 1 tsp per ramekin) Shake out excess.
Arrange on a large baking sheet.  We forgot to do this and they turned out great, just harder on the fingers getting them out.

Place a heatproof glass bowl over simmering water in a pan (on medium to medium low heat – you just have to experiment with the heat!).  Put the chopped chocolate, the 1/3 cup cream and 1 tsp  vanilla and stir. Keep stirring until the chocolate melts.


  

 Remove and cool slightly. We stuck it in the screened porch on a cold winter night and it cooled very fast. 

Meanwhile in a large bowl beat the egg whites until they form soft peaks, about 2 minutes. Slowly beat in remaining 3 tbsp sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. If you like things on the sweeter side, make it four tablespoons!



With a separate bowl and beater, beat three egg yolks until pale and thick, about three minutes. Stir half the chocolate mixture into yolks. Fold in remaining choco mixture.



Stir about a quarter of the beaten egg whites into the choco mixture until blended. Then fold in the rest of the egg whites, gently. 

Pour or spoon into the prepared ramekins. 

Bake in the center of the oven until soufflés are puffed and firm.  This will take about ten or twelve minutes. 






Sprinkle with sea salt if you like that sort of thing. We thought it made things tangier.
If serving right away, beat the cream until stiff peaks form.  Beat in the Grand Marnier and the vanilla.
Spoon onto soufflés.  Add a few raspberries.  




Enjoy!

We tested the soufflés on the first night (very nice, thank you!)  But we know you might not want to be using three bowls and three beaters on a romantic evening (or any, for that matter). So we kept four for the next day to see how they lasted.

They weren’t as puffy, but they still were delicious.  We popped them out of the ramekins and onto pretty plates and added our cream and raspberries.  Here's that version. They were a definite hit.  


In short, we like the make-ahead version best. What it lacks in puffiness, it makes up for in ease.


Happy Valentine’s Day  from our kitchens to yours, everyone!







Victoria Abbott is the mysterious collaboration between the artist and photographer Victoria Maffini and her mother, the mystery writer, Mary Jane Maffini.  That's us! Strangely enough, ourr three book collector mysteries, The Christie Curse, The Sayers Swindle and The Wolfe Widow all contain lots of food.The Marsh Madness is due out in September 2015.

We thought the cover was the best pre-Valentine's gift we could get!

































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14 comments:

  1. Ooh, yummy! And pretty. I know I have those exact ramekins. Now, what liqueurs...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Sheila! Happy Valentine's Day!

      MJ/V

      Delete
  2. You two are so adorable! And the dessert sounds yummy...Happy Valentine's Day!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Aw, thanks, Lucy! The same to you. Hope your Valentine's Day is full of fun, sun and chocolate.

    XO

    MJ/VA

    ReplyDelete
  4. This is the perfect Valentine recipe! I'm making it! We love chocolate and whipped cream around here. BTW, you two are having too much fun! Did anyone dip into the Grand Marnier, you know, to make sure it was still good?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As the lawyer in our books insists, we must say NO COMMENT.

      Hugs.

      MJ

      Delete
  5. Oh, my. This might knock the repeat pots au chocolate off our menu -- Grand Marnier gets me every time!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sometimes we just leave out all the other ingredients.

      Hugs.

      MJ

      Delete
  6. You two really are so cute!
    These are totally divine sounding, fresh or later. I'm in! When are you sending them?
    I hope Valentine's day reminds everyone to love unconditionally.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thanks, Libby! You never know when we'll show up and we will want to be loved unconditionally. And all kidding aside, that is good advice.

    Hugs,

    MJ/VA

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I worry about people who don't like Valentine's day because they don't have a significant other.
      So, I promote equal opportunity love. Whatever form it comes in!

      Delete
  8. What an incredibly rich dessert, and just perfect for the holiday. Happy Valentine's Day to everyone.

    ~ Cleo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Cleo! HV to you and Marc too. XO MJ

      Delete
  9. Happy Valentine's Day! Thanks for keeping the blog going! I love it!

    ReplyDelete