Want a great way to use up end-of-the-season peaches? Other than just eating them, you could try turning them into a frozen souffle.
If you've never had a frozen souffle, it's a towering mound of light and airy goodness — kind of like a hot souffle, but cold.
And while it has the richness of ice cream, a frozen souffle's consistency is light and airy, even delicate. It's the perfect way to use up a pound or so of late-season peaches, the fresh peach flavor intensified with a touch of peach liqueur and almond extract. As if that's not enough, this souffle is served with a bright raspberry sauce on the side.
While you don't need any special equipment — such as an ice cream maker — a frozen souffle is a bit of a project. This recipe, from Russ Parsons, takes about an hour, not including the freezing time. Be sure to have all your ingredients ready to go, and read the recipe in full before you start so you're familiar with the steps. (Pro tip: Use up some more of those ripe peaches by making a peach bellini.)
Is it worth it? Oh yeah. There's nothing like pulling an elegant souffle out of the freezer, whether you plan to parade it out to a table of guests, or simply want to savor it all by yourself, sitting on the couch with a big spoon at the ready.
FROZEN PEACH SOUFFLE WITH RASPBERRY SAUCE
Total time: 55 minutes, plus freezing and optional softening time | Serves 8 to 10
3/4 pound fresh or frozen raspberries
1/3 cup sugar
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1. Puree the raspberries in a food mill, discarding the seeds. The raspberries can also be pureed in a food processor, then strained to remove the seeds. This makes about 1 cup puree.
2. Place the berries in a medium bowl and whisk in the sugar until dissolved. Stir in the lemon juice and chill until ready to use. This makes a scant 1 1/2 cups syrup and will keep for 3 days, covered and refrigerated.
PEACH SOUFFLE AND ASSEMBLY
2 1/2 cups unpeeled, pitted and chopped peaches (about 3 peaches, 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds)
1 cup sugar, divided
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1/4 cup peach liqueur
1 (1/4-ounce) packet gelatin
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
6 eggs, separated
1 1/2 cups whipping cream
Sliced toasted almonds
1. Cut a sheet of waxed paper that is long enough to fit around a 1-quart souffle dish and fold it lengthwise in thirds to make a ribbon about 4 inches wide. Wrap this around the top of the dish to make a collar and tape the ends together. The collar should extend about 3 inches above the rim of the souffle dish. Secure in place with a rubber band or tape and place the dish in the freezer to chill. Alternatively, prepare 8 (one-half cup) ramekins in a similar fashion, making sure the collars extend about 1 1/2 inches over the ramekins.
2. In a large saucepan, heat the peaches with one-third cup sugar and lemon juice over medium heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until the peaches have softened and broken down into a consistency resembling a loose applesauce, about 15 minutes.
3. Puree the cooked peaches in a food mill or blender. You should have about 2 cups.
4. Warm the peach liqueur in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the gelatin and cook, stirring, until the gelatin melts. Immediately stir the gelatin mixture and the almond extract into the peach puree and chill until cold.
5. Bring a pot of water to a simmer. Beat together the egg yolks and remaining two-thirds cup sugar in a mixing bowl and place the bowl over the simmering water, being careful not to let the bottom of the bowl touch the water. Immediately start whisking the egg yolks and continue until they are quite pale and have approximately doubled in volume, 5 to 7 minutes. When you rub a little of the egg yolk mixture between your fingers, you shouldn't feel any grit from the sugar.
6. Remove the bowl from the heat, whisk in the peach mixture and continue whisking until the mixture has cooled.
7. Beat the egg whites to stiff peaks in an electric mixer using the whisk attachment. In a separate large bowl, beat the whipping cream to soft peaks with a whisk or hand mixer. Spoon about half of the egg whites into the cooled egg yolk mixture and stir to lighten the mixture. Add the remaining egg whites to the whipped cream and pour the peach mixture on top. Gently fold them all together to make a uniform mixture.
8. Gently spoon the mixture into the souffle dish or the ramekins. It should come at least halfway up the paper collar. Smooth the top and scatter over the sliced toasted almonds. Freeze until very firm, at least 4 hours. If you freeze it overnight, transfer it to the refrigerator for at least 1 hour to soften before serving. If you make it more than 1 day in advance, once the mixture is frozen solid, cover it with plastic wrap and gently press the wrap against the surface of the souffle.
9. When ready to serve, carefully remove the collar. Serve in ramekins or thin slices from the souffle dish with a little raspberry sauce spooned over and the rest passed on the side.
Each of 10 servings: 328 calories; 6 grams protein; 39 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams fiber; 17 grams fat; 9 grams saturated fat; 176 mg. cholesterol; 58 mg. sodium.
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