If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, try again, the adage goes. I wouldn’t go so far as to say we failed the first time, but we certainly succeeded the third time around: our prune and armagnac soufflé was our best effort yet.
I’m not referring to the rising of the soufflé but to the ways we have found of using prunes and armagnac in desserts.
Both are common ingredients in south-west France, not least because Agen – the home of the fêted Agen prune – is in Lot-et-Garonne and Armagnac is associated with Gers. Back at home, Damon and I have been using French ingredients and recipes to create our very own corner of France in Brighton.
First we tried prune and armagnac parfait. I liked the flavours and the honey snap biscuits Damon made to go with them. The actual parfait – which is pretty much frozen cream – was a touch slimy side for my tastes. I have skimmed milk in my coffee and tea, so the cream felt most odd on my tongue.
“Serving a scoop of ice cream on top and allowing it to melt into the soufflé proved a rather show-stopping finale”
Then we made prune and armagnac ice cream. That was very good – really tasty but it took several days to set properly. It was a great way of livening up an otherwise simple dessert, mind.
Finally, we made a prune and armagnac soufflé this week. The taste is much more subtle than in either of the previous efforts, but it was all the better for it. Serving a scoop of ice cream on top and allowing it to melt into the soufflé proved a rather show-stopping finale to the trio of desserts.
Third time lucky? I would say so.