Piece of cake! Make chocolate soufflé, shortcake with ease

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Chocolate soufflé: Easier ways to make dessert

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Intimidated to try making an elaborate dessert? Colin Bedford, executive chef of The Fearrington House in North Carolina, shares his easy-to-make recipes for chocolate soufflé and strawberry shortcake.

Strawberry shortcake Jell-O with Greek yogurt and lemon

Ingredients

    • 3 cup strawberry puree
    • 1 cup water
    • 4 ounces sugar
    • 1 vanilla bean, scraped and halved
    • 11/2 tablespoon unflavored powdered gelatin
    • 1/2 cup butter
    • 1/4 cup sugar
    • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
    • 1/3 cup cornstarch
    • 1/2 cup oatmeal
    • Pinch of Salt
    • 1 cup lemon juice
    • 4 eggs
    • 1 1/4 cup sugar
    • 3/4 cup Butter
    • 1 cup Greek yogurt
    • 1 cup angel food cake, diced into 1/2" pieced, toasted

Preparation

Baking Directions:

To make the Jell-O:Prepare gelatin according to package directions.  Heat water, then add sugar to dissolve.  Add vanilla bean. Combine with strawberry puree and lemon juice. Strain and divide into 8 glasses.To make the shortbread:In a medium bowl, cream together sugar and butter and then add all other ingredients. Then spread evenly on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes until golden brown.  Cool, then smash up in a Ziploc bag. To make the lemon curd:In a saucepan, warm the lemon juice over medium-low heat, stir in sugar and dissolve.  Whisk in the eggs and bring to a boil, stirring constantly.  Whisk in the cold butter. Chill & set.Once the Jell-O is set, in a bowl, combine 1 cup of lemon curd and 1 cup of Greek yogurt. Place a spoonful of the yogurt mixture in each glass, followed with and spoonful of crumble and then the angel food cake.Tip: You can infuse the water with fresh basil, then strain before adding the purée.

Fearrington's chocolate soufflé with bitter chocolate sauce and whipped cream

Ingredients

  • For the soufflé base:

    • 24 ounces 100% chocolate
    • 4 cups 2% milk
    • 5 tablespoons of cornstarch
    • 2 cups egg whites (approximately 12 eggs)
  • For the chocolate sauce:

    • 4 cups heavy cream
    • 8 oz 100% chocolate
    • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • For the whipped cream:

    • 2 cups heavy cream
    • 2 tablespoons of confectioners
    • 1 vanilla bean
    • 1 cup granulated sugar

Preparation

Baking Directions:

Brush eight 3-5 ounce ramekins with melted unsalted butter, using an upward motion. Coat each with granulated sugar.To make the soufflé base:Melt chocolate in a double boiler until hot to the touch. Reserve ¼ cup of the mil, and pour remainder slowly into the cornstarch, stirring to prevent lumps.Bring the remaining ¼ cup milk to a simmer and slowly whisk in the cornstarch mixture. Simmer for two minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Pour the chocolate into a mixer with the paddle attachment. Divide the milk into five pours, pouring in intervals into the melted chocolate, mixing well after each.  After the milk has been added, turn the heat to high for one minute, then remove from heat.  Place into a covered container and store in the refrigerator until needed.To make the chocolate sauce:Bring the cream to a simmer, then add remaining ingredients and, using a hand mixer, incorporate fully. Remove from heat, place in a covered container and refrigerate until ready to use.  To make the whipped cream:Combine all the ingredients and whip to a soft peak.  Place into a piping bag with a half inch plan top, or you can omit the bag and use a spoon.To finish:Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat the base and the sauce in a water bath until warm. Place two cups of egg whites into a mixing bowl. Whisk until foamy, then slowly add 1 cup of sugar, whisking until the mixture forms a  medium peak.  Add 8 ounces of the warm soufflé base to a mixing bowl, then whisk in 1/3 of the whipped egg whites. Fold in the remaining egg whites. Spoon into sugared molds and repeatedly tap each mold to remove any bubbles.  Place into the oven and cook for 10 minutes, rotating after 5minutes.  To serve, remove soufflés from the oven, and using the back of the spoon, push in the middle each to make a hole. Pour in the chocolate sauce and add the whipped cream.Tip: Using egg whites that were prepared the day before, and preparing the molds a day in advance, will help ensure a straight, consistent soufflé. Any remaining soufflé base will hold in the fridge in a covered container for up to one week.

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