Light and airy low carb chocolate soufflés for two. Impress your sweetie with this classic French dessert made over to be healthy and sugar-free.
Let’s talk kitchens, shall we? I am a sucker for a nice kitchen, which is understandable given my chosen profession. Whenever I walk into a home with a nicely updated kitchen, I sigh audibly with pleasure. Beautiful hardwood floors, gleaming stainless steel appliances, endless cabinetry and a spacious center island; it really doesn’t take much to make me happy. Okay, so it’s a lot, but a girl can dream, right? You would laugh hysterically if you saw my current kitchen in our rental house. It’s about the size of a postage stamp and counter space is virtually non-existent. And the upper cabinetry is placed strangely low, so that countertop appliances can’t actually sit on the countertop. There wouldn’t be room for them anyway, so I’ve banished my beloved mixer, coffee maker and blender to the pantry, where they sit on some inexpensive wire shelving feeling unloved. The kitchen does feature a double oven, though…one that is about 50 years old. It works surprisingly well, so I can’t complain about that, but it’s not exactly the gleaming gas range of my dreams.
We have, recently lucked into quite the home-buying opportunity. The Portland real estate market is a little crazy right now, with a lack of inventory and plenty of buyers. Multiple offers are being made and homes are selling for thousands of dollars over asking price. Thanks to my son, however, we have connected with the father of one of his friends who also happens to be a contractor and a “flipper”. And he just happens to have an old farmhouse he is flipping, in the exact area we want to buy. It is being completely gutted, restored and updated, with a fantastic new kitchen. And he’s letting us have some say in how the kitchen will be done (for a price, of course!).
You’d think this was my dream come true, right? The chance to choose my kitchen and all the associated bits and pieces. And it is my dream. Except…except I am completely overwhelmed with all the choices and it’s making my head spin. Cost is a factor (a LARGE factor) and not being independently wealthy, I can’t just walk into a showroom and point at the top-of-the-line appliances, snap my fingers and have the delivery men do my bidding. Even if I could, I am sure I would still feel overwhelmed. I want this kitchen to be beautiful but also highly functional, so I have to consider width and depth and capacity and BTUs and CFMs and a whole host of other acronyms I’ve never given any thought to. Let’s just say that kitchen remodelling ain’t for the faint of heart (or those who struggle with math!).
I know I am lucky and I really can’t complain. And I won’t complain much, I promise. As long as my oven can bake up pretty low carb chocolate soufflés like these ones, it’s functional enough. The reality is that I would bake and cook in an open hearth if I had to; it’s just in my blood. I’d never made soufflé before these ones and I was delighted at how well they turned out. I got a few tips from a recipe on the Food Network about using a cream base with starch for stability. But I didn’t want to use starch so I used a little xanthan gum instead and it worked like a charm. They rose delightfully and they didn’t deflate upon the slightest jiggle, although they did deflate slowly as they cooled, which soufflés are wont to do. And I confess, I actually liked them a little better as they cooled and deflated, because they became denser and somewhat gooier.
You don’t have to add the booze if you don’t want to; plain water will work just fine. But with all this kitchen-remodelling craziness, I may add a whole bottle of booze to mine!