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Author Notes: Fennel works nicely with fruit and the sweeter vegetables, so here I have paired it with both. A Chevre souffle with a base of sliced beets is coated with pistachios and lapped with a fennel raspberry vinaigrette. With its colorful red, white and green, this would also be a fun dish for Valentine's Day, Christmas (or an Italian birthday!) —LE BEC FIN
Raspberry Fennel Vinaigrette 3 cups
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cupgood quality Raspberry vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon dijon (I prefer Grey Poupon)
- 1/2 Tablespoon dark brown sugar
- 1/2 Tablespoon minced garlic
- kosher salt
- fresh coarsely ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons toasted fennel seed, coarsely ground
- 2 cup canola oil or 1 cup canola and 1 cup walnut oil
- 1/2 cup + 2 Tablespoons raspberries, frozen or fresh
- In a food processor, place vinegars through fennel seed. Buzz to combine. With the machine running, drizzle in oil to emulsify.
Pistachio Crusted Beet,Fennel and Chevre Souffle; and Plating
- 8-10 Tablespoons very soft unsalted butter
- 3/4 -1 cup finely chopped (not powdery) pistachios
- 3-6 ounces beets, peeled and steamed or roasted til tender, and sliced paper thin with mandoline or 1 mm food processor slicing blade
- oil if roasting beets
- 2-3 teaspoons toasted fennel seeds, ground
- 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons White Whole Wheat flour
- 2/3 cup whole milk
- 6 ounces plain unherbed chevre (Montrachet and Boucheron[rind too] work well)
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 large egg yolks, whisked briefly
- 4 large egg whites
- For Plating:
- 6 Tablespoons chopped pistachios to coat souffle
- 2-3 ounces mesclun greens or 6 loose cup shaped leaves of Boston lettuce
- paper thin oval curls of fennel bulb
- whole pistachios for garnish
- fennel fronds for garnish
- leftover cooked beet, julienned for optional garnish
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat insides of six 1 cup ceramic ramekins with 6-10 Tablespoons of soft butter. While holding the ramekin on its side, rotate it with one hand while you sprinkle pistachios on the butter(A solid coating is not the goal.). Spray the ramekin bottoms with cooking spray. Set aside.
- Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in heavy saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour and cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Gradually whisk in milk. Simmer mixture until very thick, stirring constantly, about 5 minutes. Add half of goat cheese and whisk until melted and smooth. Mix in salt and pepper. Whisk egg yolks and gradually whisk in hot soufflé base. Cool 5 minutes.
- Beat whites in large bowl until just stiff enough to support an egg without it sinking. Fold 1/2 of this into the soufflé base, then fold in remaining whites. Fold in remaining chevre.
- In each ramekin, spoon enough souffle mixture to form a thin layer on the bottom. Over that, make a 1/2 inch deep layer of beets,leaving a slight gap between the beets and the ramekin sides and sprinkling a little crushed fennel seed between the beet layers. Top the beet layer with the remaining souffle mixture. Place 6 ramekins in a pan or dish so that they are not touching, and place it on the front of the oven rack, Pour in enough simmering water to come about halfway up the ramekins. .
- In a heated 350 degree oven, bake soufflés until puffed and golden brown on top and softly set in center, about 20 minutes.Remove baking dish from oven and let souffles cool in their water bath 5 minutes. Remove and cool to room temperature. Run a thin bladed knife around the inside of the ramekin; tap the ramekin bottom on the counter, and flip the souffle out into your palm. Turn it over onto a parchment - lined pan so beet side is down. Place in a larger plastic bag (so souffle tops are not touched), seal and refrigerate.(These can be prepared 5 days in advance.)
- Before serving, slide the parchment onto a baking pan. In a preheated 350 degree oven, rewarm soufflés about 5-10 minutes,until heated through. If needed, roll sides in chopped pistachios.
- Onto each plate, place a base of mixed greens or an open cup of Boston lettuce. Top with the hot souffle, beet side down, and pour a ribbon of raspberry vinaigrette across the souffle and greens. Garnish with (optional) fennel curls, fennel fronds, beet and pistachios.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe with Vinegar
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Fennel