Grand Marnier Soufflé
IN THE INAUGURAL ISSUE of Food & Wine, legendary chef Jacques Pépin shared his recipe for the perfect soufflé. “Why their awesome mystique?” we asked. “Why does the idea of making one turn fearless kitchen lions into cowering lambs?” Pépin, who had recently published his tome of French cooking, La Technique, was the perfect teacher to introduce readers to the method for making “towering, golden-roofed, steamily fragrant” soufflés, giving detailed directions on everything from preparing the dish with a paper collar to beating the egg whites properly. This ethereal recipe is just as good today as it was 40 years ago.
ACTIVE 20 MIN; TOTAL 1 HR 15 MIN SERVES 6
3 Tbsp. granulated sugar 3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour Unsalted butter, softened, for greasing Crème Pâtissière (recipe follows), at room temperature 2 Tbsp. Grand Marnier 1 Tbsp. orange zest 6 large egg whites, at room temperature Powdered sugar, for garnish
1. Preheat oven to 375°F with oven rack in lower third of oven. Stir together granulated sugar and flour in a small bowl; set aside. Cut a 24- x 12-inch piece of parchment paper; fold lengthwise 3 times (letterstyle). Wrap paper around outside top of a 1-quart soufflé dish to form a collar extending 2 inches above rim; secure tightly with string or tape. Rub inside of soufflé dish and parchment collar with butter. Dust with sugar mixture, shaking out excess. Chill dish at least 15 minutes.
2. Stir together crème pâtissière, Grand Marnier, and orange zest in a large bowl. Beat egg whites in bowl of a heavy-duty stand mixer on medium speed until glossy and stiff peaks form, about 4 minutes. Whisk about one-third of egg whites into crème pâtissière mixture until well incorporated. Gently fold in remaining egg whites until just incorporated. Pour mixture into prepared dish. Place dish on a rimmed baking sheet, and bake in preheated oven until soufflé is puffed and golden brown, 40 to 45 minutes. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Serve immediately.
CRÈME PÂTISSIÈRE ACTIVE 15 MIN; TOTAL 1 HR 15 MIN MAKES 11/3 CUPS
2/3 cup granulated sugar 3 large egg yolks 1 tsp. vanilla extract 3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour 1 cup whole milk
1. Whisk together sugar, egg yolks, and vanilla in a medium bowl until mixture is pale yellow and “makes ribbons,” 3 to 4 minutes. Add flour; whisk until smooth.
2. Bring milk to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium, about 3 minutes. Gradually add milk to egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly. Return mixture to saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium, whisking constantly, about 3 minutes.
Boil mixture, whisking constantly, 1 minute. Transfer mixture to a medium bowl; press plastic wrap directly onto surface. Let cool to room temperature, about 1 hour. Mixture can be chilled, covered, for up to 3 days.