Galen Zamarra says that the anticipation and urgency of a soufflé, coupled with the succulence of pears, spell romance.
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1 cup dry white wine
1 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
2 large ripe Bartlett pears—peeled, halved and cored
2 large egg yolks
3 tablespoons egg whites (see Note)
How to Make It
Preheat the oven to 375°. Butter two 1-cup ramekins and dust them lightly with sugar. In a medium stainless-steel saucepan, combine the white wine, water and sugar and bring to a boil; stir to dissolve the sugar. Add the pears and simmer over low heat until very tender, about 7 minutes. Transfer the pears to a food processor and puree until smooth. Boil the pear cooking liquid over high heat until it is reduced to 1/3 cup, about 20 minutes. Let the pear syrup cool completely.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, cook the pear puree over moderately low heat, stirring often until reduced to 1/2 cup, about 15 minutes. Transfer the puree to a medium bowl.
In a small stainless-steel bowl, whisk the egg yolks with 1 tablespoon of the reduced pear syrup. Set the bowl over a small saucepan filled with 1-inch of gently simmering water and whisk constantly until the egg yolks thicken, about 2 minutes. Scrape the egg yolks into the pear puree and stir to blend.
In a medium stainless-steel bowl, beat the egg whites until firm peaks form. Add 1 tablespoon of the reduced pear syrup and beat the egg whites until glossy; refrigerate the remaining pear syrup for another use. Using a large rubber spatula, fold one-third of the beaten whites into the pear puree mixture to loosen it, then fold in the remaining beaten egg whites just until blended.
Spoon the soufflé mixture into the prepared ramekins. Bake the soufflés in the center of the oven for about 20 minutes, or until golden and well risen. Serve the soufflés at once.
The pear syrup and pear puree can be refrigerated separately overnight.
Egg whites are easier to measure after they have been lightly beaten.
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