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Author Notes: Years ago, for our fifth wedding anniversary, the Spouse took me to Lutece for dinner. I recall at one point during the main course being slightly peeved because, being six months pregnant, I couldn't drink and the Spouse was on his second (or possibly third) glass of Cabernet. All that crankiness came to screeching halt at the end of the meal, when Andre Soltner (!!!!) himself came to the table to inquire how everything was, and then sent over for dessert a cold raspberry souffle, which to date has been the single best thing I ever ate. It contained meringue with ground almonds layered with a decadent raspberry mousse. I've never been foolish enough to try and recreate it; this is an attempt to recapture some of the flavors. —wssmom
Serves for 2
12 ounces raspberries, pureed and put through a sieve to remove the seeds
3 jumbo egg yolks (or four regular sized egg yolks)
1/2 cup palm sugar
3/4 cup heavy cream, whipped
2 tablespoons Grand Marnier
Mint leaves for garnish
ground almonds for garnish
- Using a hand mixer, beat together the eggs until thick and then beat in the palm sugar and a wee bit of the raspberries. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, or a double boiler, gently heat the egg-sugar-raspberry mixture over very low heat, stirring gently, until it coats the back of a spoon. Remove from the heat and let cool.
- Strain the egg custard, which may or may not have a lump or two, into pureed raspberries, and stir in the Grand Marnier (you could also use Chambord or Framboise, should you be so fortunate as to have some on hand). Taste for sweetness. Depending on the tartness of your raspberries, you might want to add a touch more liqueur or sugar. Fold in the whipped cream.
- Create a 1 1/2-inch high collar around two medium-sized individual straight-sided ramekins or souffle dishes by taking a length of aluminum foil, folding it in half, oiling it lightly with a neutral oil and securing it around the dish with a rubber band or tape or string or what-have-you.
- Fill each dish, and extending about an inch over the rim up into the collar, with the raspberry mixture and freeze for eight hours. Gently remove the collars and smooth the sides of the souffle with a spatula. Garnish with a sprig of mint, a sprinkling of ground almonds and perhaps a perfect raspberry or two.