I’ve been wanting to make soufflés for a while now and when I was at home for Christmas I finally did. With my very knowledgeable mother by my side. But I needn’t have worried – it wasn’t hard at all. And it is so satisfying watching the soufflés rise in the oven through the oven door.
The original recipe called for Grand Marnier, but we didn’t have any and therefore substituted it with another liqueur; St Germain. It didn’t add that much flavour though, but there was an elderflower hint at least.
Lemon sufflé with elderflower liqueur, makes 6
50 g butter
80 g plain flour
200 ml milk
3 egg yolks
6 egg whites
80 g caster sugar
100 ml St Germain elderflower liqueur
grated zest from 1 lemon
softened butter and caster sugar for the ramekins
icing sugar for dusting
Melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the flour and incorporate it into the melted butter using a wooden spoon. Add milk and sugar and incorporate it on low heat until the batter is smooth and easily comes off the sides of the pan. Leave to cool.
Thereafter mix in the egg yolks, liqueur and lemon zest. Beat the egg whites to a hart foam and fold them into the mixture.
Butter the ramekins thoroughly and coat them in caster sugar. Fill the ramekins (all the way up and make sure the surface is even).
Bake in 200C for 12-15 minutes; until they’ve risen above the ramekin edge and are golden brown on top. Keep an eye on them through the oven door.
Remove the soufflés carefully from the oven, dust with icing sugar and serve immediately.
The pudding at the crayfish party was one of my favourite puddings; homemade crème brûlée. This one was flavoured with my homemade elderflower cordial and served with crispy biscotti (and some chocolates and Swedish pick ‘n mix) and went down a treat with ice-cold homemade limoncello.
Fläder crème brûlée, serves 4
300 ml double cream
150 ml elderflower cordial
50 ml caster sugar
6 egg yolks
some more caster sugar
Bring cream, cordial and sugar to the boil, Leave to cool a little. Beat the egg yolks lightly and add first some of the cream mixture and then the rest. Divide between pots/ramekins and bake in 100C fan oven until just set, about 35-40 minutes. Leave t cool completely and keep in the fridge until serving. Before serving cover the top with a thin layer of caster sugar and use a crème brûlée burner to create a crisp sugar layer on top. Serve immediately, decorated with a strawberry, and biscotti on the side.
Biscotti, makes about 20
Adapted from Delia’s recipe.
110 g plain flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
a pinch salt
25 g ground almonds
50 g whole almonds (skin on)
75 g golden caster sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
Mix flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Add ground and whole almonds and sugar. Mix thoroughly and add the egg. Mix with a wooden spoon/using your hands to a smooth dough. Place on a floured surface and roll into a 28 cm long roll. Place the roll on a lined baking tray. Bake for 30 minutes in 170C oven. Leave to cool completely.
Reduce the heat to 150C. Use a serrated knife to cut the biscotti into slightly diagonal slices about 1 cm wide. Place on the lined baking tray and bake for another 30 minutes, until golden and crisp. Leave to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.
A recipe for elderflower cordial in October when the autumn has properly hit London doesn’t seem very seasonal (and it isn’t), but I made a batch in June that I keep in the freezer and use for various desserts when I want to bring summer back, if only for a moment. And since I am about to post one of these recipes tomorrow, I thought it would be nice of me to provide this recipe as well.
Of course you can use store-bought cordial, Belvoir, has an excellent one. But considering how easy this is to make I urge you to try it next year when the elderflower is in bloom.
This recipe is from one of my mother’s many cookbooks, unfortunately I don’t remember which one but it is a tried and tested recipe that requires very little work. The cordial is uncooked which means it doesn’t keep for very long in the fridge, so pour it into small plastic bottles or zip-lock bags and keep it in the freezer instead. When defrosted it keeps for 3-4 days in the fridge.
Elderflower cordial, makes about 1,5 litres
35-40 elderflower clusters
3 lemons, sliced
1,5 litres water
1,5-2 kg caster sugar
50 g citric acid
Clean the flower clusters and place in a large bowl/bucket (that fits in the fridge or other cool place). Add the lemon slices. Bring the water to the boil and dissolve the sugar and citric acid in it. Add the syrup to flowers and lemons and stir. Leave to cool and cover with cling. Keep in a cool place (like the fridge) for 3-4 days. Stir a few times a day. Pour through a fine sieve and into bottles and freeze. Fresh/defrosted cordial keep for 3-4 days in the fridge.
Note: Picture borrowed from gourmetodling.com
With inspiration from Swedish blog Matrepubliken I decided to use up some of my homemade cordial and make an elderflower cheesecake for the office. As you may know by now my colleagues are terribly retro and love cheesecake so I try to come up with new seasonal flavours once in a while. This one is not too sweet and actually feels quite light.
Elderflower cheesecake, serves 8
200 g digestives
75 g salted butter, melted
400 g Philadelphia
2 gelatin leaves
50 ml milk
250 ml concentrated elderflower cordial (after taste)
Crumble the biscuits in a food processor and mix in the butter. Flatten on the base of a springform and bake for 10 minutes in 175C oven. Lower the temperature to 150C.
Beat Philadelphia and the eggs until smooth. Soak the gelatin. Heat up the milk, squeeze the excess water out of the gelatin and add it to the milk. Stir to dissolve.
Add the elderflower cordial and the milk mixture to the cheese mixture. Mix well and pour it onto the base and bake for 20-30 minutes until just set in 150C oven. Leave to cool.
This elderflower parfait has featured on the blog before, but it was such a success at my last dinner party I had to post it again.
Actually, I dare say this is the perfect summer pudding! Perfect for your guests because it is delicious, refreshing, has different textures and simply tastes of summer. And perfect for you because apart from washing the berries you can make everything ahead. Plus you will get standing ovations and plenty of compliments.
Elderflowerparfait cake, serves 8-10
6 egg yolks
200 ml caster sugar
600 ml whipping cream or double cream
130 ml concentrated elderflower cordial (only a guideline as different concentrations for different cordials)
Beat the yolks and sugar until pale and fluffy in a mixing bowl. In a separate mixing bowl whip the cream. Fold the cream into the egg mixture. Add the elderflower and stir to combine. Pour into a clingfilm lined springform. Cover with more cling and freeze for at least four hours. Place on a cake plate and top with berries before serving.
Oat crisps, makes about 50
300 ml oats
200 ml granulated sugar
50 ml syrup
150 g melted butter
50 ml cream
150 ml plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
Combine all the ingredients and place dollops the size of a teaspoon on parchment paper on a baking tray quite far apart, they expand a lot in the oven. I only placed 9 on each sheet and that worked perfectly. Bake in 175 C oven for 8 minutes. Leave to cool on a wire rack. Store in an airtight container.