Life

James St Cookery School: Passion fruit soufflé and honey madeleines

Niall McKenna's passion fruit soufflé
Niall McKenna

WITH our refurbished restaurant James St now in full swing, it's great to see what was formerly two establishments coming together as one.

The amalgamation has not just been about the kitchens and the restaurant space itself but our two teams, kitchen and front of house; seeing staff work and learn from each other has been inspiring – and it all comes together in the successful delivery of menus.

Two of our classic dishes are these madeleines and the souffle. There was a wonderful moment on Wednesday night when a restaurant guest pulled me to the side and said that the souffle they'd just enjoyed was the best they'd ever had. So well done to our very own Conor – the recipe clearly works well.

PASSION FRUIT SOUFFLÉ

(Serves 4)

For the passion fruit reduction:

800ml passion fruit puree

600g sugar

For the crème patisserie:

500ml milk

100g sugar

50g corn flour

3 eggs

To finish the soufflé:

110g passion fruit reduction

200g egg white

75g sugar

200g crème patisserie

Method

Reduce the passion fruit and sugar to a jammy consistency over a medium heat. To make the the crème patisserie, heat the milk to boiling point. Whisk the eggs, sugar and corn flour together and pour the milk over the egg mix; whisk together over the heat until thickened.

Line soufflé dishes with soft butter and coat in caster sugar. Mix the passion fruit reduction with the crème patisserie. Whip egg whites till soft peaks, add sugar and fold in with the passion fruit and crème mix; divide evenly among souffle dishes. Cook for 8-10 mins at 180C.

HONEY MADELEINES

(Makes up to 18)

75g butter

2 tblsp runny honey

2 large eggs

100g caster sugar

50g self-raising flour

½ tsp baking powder

50g ground almonds

1 pinch salt

madeleine tray buttered and dusted with flour

Method

Preheat the oven to 200C. Place the butter and honey in a small pan over the lowest possible heat and heat gently, stirring from time to time. Once melted, leave to cool.

Whisk the eggs and sugar together with an electric mixer or hand-held whisk until pale and mousse like. This may take up to 10 minutes.

Sieve the flour into a large mixing bowl and stir in the baking powder, almonds and salt. Add in half the melted butter mix. Add the other half to the beaten eggs and sugar mix.

Fold all the ingredients together quickly but gently using a large metal spoon. Place mix in the madeleine moulds and bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden and risen.

Leave to cool in tin for a couple of minutes and then place on a wire tray to cool. Re-grease the madeleine mould with butter and flour and continue adding mix for baking.

Repeat until all the mix is used. It's worth noting that madeleines freeze well in an airtight container.

We make these for petits fours to serve with coffee; you could also serve with cream or ice cream as a delicious dessert.

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