Goats Cheese Soufflé With Cider Poached Pear & Fig
I’ve never really been that fond of goats, especially as one in the farm up the road from me has 3 horns and different coloured eyes. Bless him, but he totally freaks me out. The mutant goat…. it’s what nightmares are made of!!!
But then one day a few weeks ago Ethel came into my life and I’m starting to become fond of these furry four legged creatures. For a start Ethel is the image of goat beauty. Her smooth, clean snowy white coat along with a bright red neck scarf and perfectly pink nose certainly makes her the envy of my local goats!
But before you think I have lost my marbles talking about goat beauty, I should explain that Ethel is also one of the Capricorn Goats cheese herd. We got chatting over twitter (crazy but true) and I found out about the Capricorn Bloggers Challenge. A few days later a gorgeous wicker hamper full Somerset ingredients arrived at my door and my challenge is to think up a few goats cheese recipes, and then blog them! Given that I spend a lot of my spare time thinking about new recipe ideas, this challenge could not be more perfect.
You can read a bit more about Ethel by viewing her profile and you’ll find some amusing facts about the other girls in the herd too. But if you want a goaty friend, send Ethel a tweet like I did @ethelthegoat. I guarantee you will get a friendly response and she is sure to make you smile. How she has time to tweet between grooming, eating grass and making cheese I’ll never know!
It’s a good job that I love goats cheese though, as since the hamper arrived my mind has been buzzing with the stuff. I knew that I wanted to develop a sweet recipe to start with, and for some reason my mind kept coming back to soufflé. So I’m asking you to trust me on this one because I know goats cheese is not the first thing you might think of putting in a soufflé, but mix it with fig and pear and you’ve got an innovate dessert that totally works.
Now that the evenings are drawing in and autumn is in the air, a hot dessert seems much more appealing don’t you think?. Soufflés are as light as air and not as scary to make as people might think. I would say it is much more difficult trying to take a good photo of said soufflé before it starts to deflate. You should try it. There is approximately 60 seconds to get it out of the oven, placed on a plate, into the right light and snap away with the camera like mad. Don’t think I did too badly…on my second attempt!
So what makes my soufflé a bit special? Well, you’ve got to love lining the ramekin with walnuts for a delicious nutty crunch….
…and poaching the fruit in cider from Somerset.
But for me the best bit was that I could taste the different flavours coming through in each mouthful which is a real delight. My taste testers said the same too.
MAKE AHEAD TIP
Get these ready to go in the ramekins a bit before your make your dinner, because they only take 15 mins to cook so can be ready by the time you have cleared any plates away and topped up your wine.
- 100ml cider
- 1 large ripe fig
- 1 pear
- 1 tbsp honey
- 20g ground walnuts (I did mine in the food processor)
- Half a round of Capricorn goats cheese (rind cut off and cut into small squares)
- 2 egg whites
- 25g caster sugar
- Olive oil for greasing
- Pre heat oven to 200c
- Peel your pear, cut out the core and slice into 8 strips
- Cut the top off your fig and cur into quarters
- Add fruit to a small saucepan with the cider and honey and cook on a low heat for about 25 mins until the liquid has reduced by about half and your pears are soft but not mushy
- Whisk your egg whites until fluffy and then add sugar slowly and continue to whisk until you see small peaks forming on the side of the bowl as the whisk moves around
- Use a pastry brush to line your ramekins with olive oil and then stick the ground walnuts all around on the inside
- Remove fruit from the saucepan once cooled slightly and cut into very small chunks. It’s worth spending a bit of time on this bit to get the chunks nice and small
- Add the goats cheese and fruit to the egg whites mix and fold in with a metal spoon
- Divide mixture between two ramekins and place into the oven to cook for 15 mins
- Get your serving plates ready and when you take the soufflé out of the oven serve straight away with a little dusting of icing sugar if you wish
Look out for another goaty recipe soon…
Disclaimer: Thank you to Capricorn Goats Cheese for inviting me to take part and for sending me the lovely hamper.