Fear not the souffle. It may seem an intimidating dessert that only the French-trained can manage but truly, they are no big deal. If you can manage to make some decent whipped egg whites that hold a peak you have half the challenge mastered. If you can fold the base flavoring into those egg whites without deflating them then you are 99% there.
This souffle is based on a recipe by the great doyenne of French cooking herself, Julia Child. I substituted our Orange Bitters for the vanilla extract in the recipe but if you don’t have the bitters, vanilla will do. You cannot substitute anything for the delicious Cocoa Infused Maple Syrup that gets drizzled on top. It is like these two were made for each other.
One fussy thing about souffle is that it waits for no one so put it in the oven when you sit down to eat your meal. It is not very large – serving 3-4 people – so it will cook in about 30 minutes. Even with perfect technique in every step the souffle will deflate a little when it comes out of the oven. Be like Julia and roll with it, because it is every bit as fluffy and delicious.
Butter and granulated sugar for lining the souffle dish
3 Tbsp flour
¼ cup milk
⅓ cup granulated sugar
Zest from 1 navel orange
4 egg yolks (save whites, see below)
2 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp Grand Marnier or other orange liqueur
5 egg whites
Pinch of salt
2 Tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp Runamok Orange bitters (or vanilla extract)
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting
Runamok’s Cocoa Infused Maple Syrup
Prepare a 4- 6 cup souffle dish by coating the inside with butter and then sprinkle with sugar. Turn the dish until all surfaces are covered in sugar and discard the excess. Preheat the oven to 375.
In a medium saucepan, combine the flour, milk, sugar and zest. Put the heat on medium and slowly bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil for about 30 seconds or until it has become thick. Remove from the heat and let cool a little. Beat in the egg yolks one at a time and then add the butter and Grand Marnier. Set aside to cool completely.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric beater until they become frothy. Add the pinch of salt and then slowly add the 2 tablespoons of sugar while continuing to beat. Continue until stiff peaks form. Add the bitters or vanilla extract.
Add about ⅓ of the whipped egg whites to the base and stir until blended and the base has been lightened a little. Pour the base back into the remaining egg whites and gently fold until fully combined. Pour the mixture into the souffle dish and put into the oven on a middle rack. Bake until the souffle has puffed and started to brown on top, about 30 minutes. You can poke a fork into the middle and if it is still very wet, return to the oven. If it is just moist, that is perfect. Serve at the table immediately with a generous pour of Runamok’s Cocoa Infused Maple as a sauce.