So I haven’t been on here for quite some time. I’d like to say it’s because I’ve been busy traveling the world, learning new languages and meeting interesting people. The truth is, I’ve just been enjoying my cozy life in Huntington Beach. I suppose I have done a bit of traveling – I braved a tropical storm in Turks and Caicos, attended the Consumer Electronics Show for work in Las Vegas and even made it up to San Francisco a couple times. Oh, and I did attempt to learn Mandarin with Rosetta Stone for about five minutes one Saturday before I decided my time would be better spent alphabetizing my bookshelves (no, really). But for the most part, nothing has changed.
All that to say, it took a really really amazing recipe to pull me out of my posting slump. And this is it.
Last weekend, I visited my parents in San Diego and my mom whipped up a batch of twice baked sweet potato soufflés. These. Things. Are. Delicious. And they’re so dang cute! They’re my new favorite thing. And I’m not just talking about food. If you have any sense at all, you’ll make them and taste for yourself. Here’s how.
The first step is to roast the gahhhlic. Just cut the tops off of three bulbs, sit them on a piece of tin foil and drizzle them with olive oil. Add some water to the foil packet, seal it up and pop it in the oven until the garlic looks like this.
Once the sweet potatoes and garlic are ready, squeeze the garlic out of each clove and puree it all (every last drop!) with the sweet potatoes and plenty of salt and pepper in a food processor. Resist the urge to dive face first into the food processor. It only gets better from here.
In a saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Add flour and continue to stir over low heat for 2 minutes until the butter and flour come together. It’s important to stick at it for this long to cook the starchy taste out of the roux. No one likes a starchy roux.
In a separate bowl beat egg whites until they form medium peaks then fold the egg whites into the sweet potato mixture in two batches. Be gentle with it. Show it some love. The goal is to keep as much air in the mixture as possible.
You’re almost done! Divide the mixture into 6 buttered ramekins, place said ramekins in a roasting pan and fill the roasting pan with enough water to come 1/3 of the way up the sides of the ramekins. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until they’re set and look …
… like this. Now, allow them to cool completely. It’s ok if they fall. They’re supposed to. These soufflés aren’t the high maintenance, fussy type. They’re the down-to-earth, doesn’t-matter-if-they-sink type.
Last step! Just before you’re ready to serve the soufflés, turn them out onto individual oven-safe dishes, cover completely with cream and the remaining cheese and return to a 425 degree oven for ten minutes …
… until they look like this. For your convenience, here’s the recipe, adapted especially for you, from Sainsbury’s Magazine. It was a lot of math. Grams to ounces, Celsius to Fahrenheit … you’re welcome.
- 3 heads garlic, tops removed
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 14 oz. sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 1.5 oz. butter, unsalted (plus a bit extra to grease ramekins)
- 1.5 oz. all purpose flour
- 5 oz. 2% milk
- 3.5 oz. sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 2 large egg yolks
- 4 large egg whites
- 8.5 oz. heavy whipping cream
- Parsley, chopped
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Brush 6 ramekins with melted butter
- Place garlic in aluminum foil, drizzle with half the olive oil, add about 4 tbsp. water
- Seal foil packet and bake garlic for 40 minutes, or until completely tender
- Drizzle sweet potatoes with remaining olive oil and bake with the garlic until tender
- Allow garlic to cool and then squeeze garlic from each clove into food processor with sweet potato, salt and pepper
- Puree and set aside
- In a heavy saucepan, melt butter over low heat
- Add flour and stir over low heat for 2 minutes until the butter and flour come together
- Slowly add milk, continuously stirring until the mixture almost comes to a boil (it will be thick!)
- Add half the cheese to mixture and stir until melted
- Remove from heat and add sweet potato and garlic puree
- Add egg yolks and season with salt and pepper
- In a separate bowl, beat egg whites until they form medium peaks
- Fold egg whites into the sweet potato mixture in two batches (be gentle – the fluffier, the better)
- Divide mixture between the 6 ramekins, set in roasting pan and fill pan with enough water to come 1/3 of the way up the sides of the ramekins
- Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the soufflés are set
- Remove from oven and allow soufflés to cool completely
- Just before serving, turn soufflés out onto individual oven-safe dishes, cover with cream and sprinkle with remaining cheese
- Bake at 400 degrees for ten minutes, garnish with chopped parsley and dig in
- Thank my mom (and Sainsbury’s Magazine) later