Souffle rises to the occasion

Dessert: Father's Day deserves this extravagance of cream, honey and berries.

June 13, 1999|By Betty Rosbottom | Betty Rosbottom,Los Angeles Times Syndicate

As a cook, I welcome all holidays because they are an excuse for indulgence in the kitchen. That's when I forget about fat grams and calories and freely use cream, eggs, sugar, butter and all those other ingredients the "food police" discourage. Confidently, I rationalize that cooking for celebrations allows for a little extravagance. With that philosophy in mind, I've pulled out the directions for a dessert that has been in my files for many years and reworked it for Father's Day on June 20.

This recipe is one of my favorites. It is made simply by whipping cream with honey and adding grated orange, lemon and lime zests along with some almond extract as the flavorings. The whipped cream mixture is poured into a souffle dish, which has been wrapped with an aluminum foil collar, and then frozen. When set, the collar is removed and the souffle stands about an inch above the rim of the dish.

I find such make-ahead desserts a definite advantage when entertaining. For example, this souffle can be assembled and frozen five days ahead so that all that is necessary at serving time is to do the garnishing.

Frozen Honey Souffle With Strawberries and Blueberries

Serves 8

SOUFFLE:

2 1/2 cups whipping cream

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons honey

3 1/2 teaspoons grated orange zest

1 3/4 teaspoons grated lemon zest

1 3/4 teaspoons grated lime zest

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

dash salt

GARNISH:

1/3 cup toasted sliced or slivered almonds (see note)

1 pint strawberries, hulled and thinly sliced

1 pint blueberries

several julienne strips of orange, lemon and lime peel for garnish, optional

To prepare souffle, fold sheet of 24-by-12-inch aluminum foil into thirds lengthwise. Spray with nonstick spray or coat with vegetable oil on one side of folded strip. Wrap strip tightly around 1-quart souffle dish (oiled side facing in) so that it overlaps and extends at least 2 inches above rim of dish. Secure with tape.

Whip cream with electric mixer on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Reduce speed to low and beat in honey in thin stream. Continue to beat until cream is firm, increasing speed to medium. (Watch carefully so you do not overbeat.) Remove from mixer, and with spatula, fold in orange, lemon and lime zests. Stir in almond extract and salt.

Fill prepared souffle with mixture and smooth top with spatula. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze until firm, 6 hours or overnight. (Souffle can be prepared to this point 5 days ahead. Keep covered and frozen.)

When ready to serve, remove from freezer and discard plastic wrap and foil. Pat nuts in border on top of souffle. Mound enough strawberries and blueberries to fit comfortably in center of souffle. Place remaining berries in separate bowl. Garnish mounded fruit with some julienne strips of citrus peel.

To serve, use serving spoon and scoop wedges into dessert bowls. Garnish each serving with berries.

Note: To toast almonds, place nuts on rimmed baking sheet and toast at 350 degrees until golden, about 8 minutes. Watch carefully and stir nuts once or twice. Remove nuts from baking sheet to work surface to cool.

Pub Date: 06/13/99

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