Of Meyer Lemons, Souffles and Romance

There is something exciting about a souffle. The anticipation, the perfect timing, its delicate nature… I would even say there is something romantic about a souffle. Yes, I said it, romantic. Souffle for two is romantic.

This is a roux based souffle, which yields a super creamy interior, almost like a custard. This is the basic recipe I use always, but this time, I flavored it with limoncello and what else but meyer lemon curd. Oh yes, and some pistachio and meyer lemon shortbread cookies. It couldn’t be any other way.

It seems like souffle has been on everyone’s mind this week (as seen here, here, and here). Maybe Valentine’s Day being around the corner has something to do with it? I have to admit that I have never celebrated Valentine’s. (I’m sorry all you dreamers and romantics out there), but all these images might have influenced me a bit.

So can you share with me, does souffle speak of romance to you?

Meyer Lemon and Pistachio Shortbread

110 grams butter
30 grams powdered sugar
Zest of 1 large or 2 small meyer lemons
1 Tbs meyer lemon juice
140 grams flour
2 grams fine sea salt
30 grams pistachios, chopped

Cream the butter and powdered sugar until light. Add the zest and juice and mix. Add the flour and salt and mix until combined. Add the chopped pistachios and finish mixing.

Roll dough into a log that is about 2″ in diameter. Refrigerate the dough for 2 hours.

Cut the dough into disks that are about 1/4″-1/2″ thick. Bake at 350F for about 10 minutes or until lightly golden.

Lemon Curd

100 grams eggs
35 grams sugar
100 grams meyer lemon juice
Zest of 1 meyer lemon
10 grams butter, room temperature

In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, juice and zest. Cook this mixture in a double boiler until it thickens (84C).

Strain into a clean bowl and chill it over an ice bath until it is about body temperature. Add the room temperature butter and mix with a hand blender until an emulsion is form (it will turn a bit lighter in color). Refrigerate until ready to use.

Meyer Lemon Souffle

90 grams butter
110 grams bread flour
400 ml whole milk
4 egg yolks
4 egg whites
90 grams sugar
125 grams lemon curd
15 grams of limoncello
Butter, room temperature

In a medium saucepan, melt the butter. Add the bread flour and cook for about 2 minutes to make a roux. Add the hot milk and whisk It will thicken to a paste. Transfer this mixture to a clean bowl. Using a wooden spoon or spatula, continue mixing the roux base to cool it down slightly before we add the egg yolkd. When steam stops coming off but it is still warm, add the egg yolks one a time and mix.

In the meantime, start whipping the egg whites. When they are medium peaks, start adding the sugar slowly. Whip to stiff peaks.

Add the lemon curd and limoncello to the roux and egg yolk base. Fold in a third of the meringue to the base and mix to lighten it. Add the rest of the meringue and fold gently.

Brush inside of ramekins with room temperature butter and coat the sides with sugar. Fill the ramekins with souffle base almost to the top.

Bake at 400F for about 15 minutes depending on the size of the ramekin.

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76 Responses to “Of Meyer Lemons, Souffles and Romance”

  1. Peter G says:

    Romantic or not…it looks delicious!

  2. cindy* says:

    romantic, yes. i think i may have found my valentine’s dessert…as i love to find any reason to celebrate valentine’s day. i’m a sap that way.

  3. For me anything in pastel shade and gooey gooey is romantic:) Your pictures evoke romance anyway!! I like the shortbread.

  4. Carolina says:

    So romantic… I love your blog!
    Have a nice day.

  5. Bea says:

    So beautifful! I’ll make these Shortbread this weekend! :)

  6. mmmmmmmm souffle!! yum!!! and yes dessert for 2 is romantic I think, especially if you can share the one!

  7. Nelle says:

    absolutely wonderful pics. I hope I could take that kind of pics some day. Keep on good work ;)

  8. Botacook says:

    Your photos are magnificent, with spring colours. And these soufflés are truly mouthwatering!

  9. Zerogluten says:

    Con las ganas que tengo yo de hacer un souffle y tu coges y me haces esto!
    De este mes no pasa que ya me he comprado hasta los ramequines. Ya te contaré.
    Los tuyos para no perder las buenas costumbres, absoluamente perfectos.
    Muchos besitos desde este lado del charco.

  10. Christy says:

    Your photos are so refreshing, Aran!! They look like they came right out of Donna Hay magazine!!

    Hm…I’ve never associated souffles with romance, but I suppose the anticipation is what links the two together.

    PS. Love the cute blue baking cups!!

  11. Rox says:

    I’ve never tried souffles, mostly because they’re not very popular in my corner of the world and no matter where i looked, I wasn’t able to find ramekins. I’ve started considering buying them online and risk the dangers of international shipping :)

    Your souffle looks amazing, and even if I haven’t tasted it, it feels special to me and very different from the other sweets.

  12. Love the blue “tiffany” colored cups!

    No slamming the oven door and a little confidence is all it takes for souffle!

    Valentine’s is kind of a weird day – many expectations if you have a valentine and sadness if you don’t.

  13. Oh, Aran, I am sooo making these cookies! Your pistachio recipes are wonderful. Actually, all of your recipes are! :D

  14. Carolyn says:

    Wow. I don’t know about romance, but all you have to say to me is Meyer Lemon and I’m there! What a beautiful photo. And the cookies …! Thanks for posting this!

  15. Well, I guess I think of souffles as infatuation – and then they fall! But those cookies – I could go for those…

  16. Camille says:

    Oh, yes, definitely romantic and the lemon..perfect. Can never get enough lemon.

  17. Joyce says:

    I can taste the spring! I think I have mentioned before anything tarty has my heart! xoxo

  18. MeetaK says:

    I love lemon souffle. It’s a perfect harmony of tangy and airy goodness! These look great!

  19. lynda says:

    Your amazing photography makes all of your creations seem romantic. These souffles look positively ethereal! Did you bake them in little paper cups??I just love it! The whole look says Spring!

  20. Aran says:

    Lynda- no those are actually ceramic cups!

    Thanks everyone!

  21. You have never celebrated Valentine’s Day…I have never had a souffle before. I love the petite size of these. It makes them seem less intimidating to bake.

  22. Rita says:

    Souffle sure sounds romantic, however, I don’t think I would plan it for a date night without a back up plan. What if it doesn’t rise?? Hahaha….I am sure it doesn’t happen to you though. The pics are gorgeous as usual!

  23. Romantic depending on the situation… In any case your souflées look mighty delicious! Stunning pics!



  24. alyson. says:

    mmmm, I love shortbread.

    these look fantastic Aran!

  25. Cakespy says:

    Oh my, I think I’m in loooove…with this souffle! They look so yum. And cute (this is very important)!

  26. paula says:

    how do you do it? you truly amaze me.

  27. I am quickly becoming obsessed with your photography. You are truly talented. Of course, the recipes are okay too ;)

  28. I am completely enamored with souffles! They’re so magical. I also love meyer lemons, so the combination of the souffle, shortbread and curd is mouth-watering! :)

    I love the little cups you baked the souffle in; I’ve been looking all over for something like that. Do you happen to remember where you got them?

    Thanks for a great recipe, as always! :)

  29. everything sweet speaks to me of romance! duh :) hehe. though i must say that your souffles are indeed something that would make my heart beat faster. i think for me in general it is the sound of the word souffle–it is a french onomatopoeia, it sounds like what it means; a breath, a little sigh just short of a sigh, a souffle is a content sound, whimsical too, romance ah bien sur! and a souffle for two…all the better.

  30. love love love the COLORS!!!
    not even going to mention the divine looking desserts…sigh

  31. Souffles are most definitely romantic, but I think there’s hardly anything more romantic than cooking in general, and nothing more attractive than a man who loves to cook (and whose creations are palatable).

  32. I love souffles – everything about them. There’s a souffle restaurant here and it’s definitely a romantic place – tiny with very soft lighting, off on a narrow little street.

    Beautiful styling, Aran.

  33. I’ve never prepared, nor eaten a souffle (that I’m aware of), but this won’t last for much longer. Your instructions have me believing I can do this.
    Your photography is absolutely stunning! It’s pure joy to open your blog. Thank you so much for creating something so beautiful.

  34. Seanna Lea says:

    The shortbread looks stunning (and the souffle is amazing too).

    I am so tempted to make many of the things I see here (starting with the pate de fruit), but I probably should start with the shortbread. I know I can make shortbread!

  35. Jaime says:

    Oooh, Aran, this post makes my heart sing! Ah, quelle belle photo, encore!

  36. Tartelette says:

    I don’t know, souffles remind me of friday nights dinner at my parents when my mom ould make gruyere souffles. Sweets came later but I seem to have forgotten the savory ones now!!
    Clouds of perfection my dear!

  37. I love your blog. Thanks for all the inspiration. I just featured you on my blog.

    Check out the post.


  38. Jen Yu says:

    Yay, pistachios! and Meyer lemons!! Beautiful combination and the lemons look so brilliant and fresh – I can almost smell them. I’ve only ever made chocolate souffle which isn’t very romantic when it’s a big one split among a half dozen people ;) But I think little ones are definitely a nice romantic endeavor, especially if they look like yours.

  39. mc says:

    Your photos are great!!and it looks so delicious!!

  40. Hola Aran! Acabo de descubrir tu blog ye me ha enamorado!!! Las fotografías son preciosas y las recetas fantásticas. Y que alegría cuando he visto comentarios en castellano!!! ;))
    Primero he pensado que eras catalana por el nombre, pero ya he visto que eres vasca…No me enrollo más, qu muchas felicidades por este rincón tan acogedor…y que con tu permiso te voy a visitar aisduamente!!!
    Besos desde cataluña,

  41. well honey-v dy is just a good excuse for a little romance and these are IT!
    i think i’ll for sure make these for dinner! (we are going to craft bar, tom colicchio’s restaurant for lunch!)

  42. glamah16 says:

    We dont really do Valentines Day either. But the souffles have that air of romance while being light and fun.

  43. The souffle looks so light and airy. The photos are so sweet and full of romance!

  44. amy says:

    i can just taste that lemon-y loveliness!

  45. my mouth is watering!! not only does the souffle look incredibly yummy, the adorable cup it’s in so cute!

  46. Cakebrain says:

    Your pics certainly evoke romance! What a lovely looking souffle!

  47. Vera says:

    It is certainly romantic and so delicious looking!

  48. KINHA says:

    No dia 30 de Março, estarei embarcando em um cruzeiro Santos(Brazil)/Veneza(Itália) no navio “Splendour of the Sea”. Visitarei 3 continentes, 8 países e mais de 20 cidades.
    Farei postagens diárias e com fotos, e espero a sua companhia nesta grande viagem. Desde já espero sua visita.

  49. I’m in love with your pictures. Your photography skills are amazing!!!

    PS: I love the page too =) You’re definitely going on my blogroll <3

  50. Peabody says:

    Yum! The souffle looks great but I am so making your shortbread.

  51. Irene says:

    It’s beautiful, Aran! Love the flavor combination, love these pretty pretty cups. Now, that’s what I call a shot of love! Happy V-day to you and your beautiful family!

  52. jrkp says:

    “Amy from eggs on Sunday” and I absolutely MUST know where you got those pale ceramic cups. Please let us patronize the vendor or else our Easters will fall flat.

    LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the photography and recipes.

  53. Aran says:

    Amy and jrkp- sorry for not responding sooner. i completely missed the first comment. These cups are from a german company called ASA. i don’t remember where i got them but you can probably google them and be able to search them that way. they are cute aren’t they?

  54. They look perfect! I’ve yet to make a successful souffle like yours!

  55. Marianna says:

    yess!!! the shortbread recipe is in metric!!! cant wait to test it out at home!!! lovely work, goes without saying.

  56. Julia says:

    These photos look fantastic; I’m salivating for something refreshingly lemon now!

  57. WOW I have only just discovered your blog/ site.

    I am a FMCG packaging designer, so I deal with alot of food/photography so I truley appreciate your work- you have a beautiful way of capturing light in your photography and the styling of your food is beautiful and unique!

    Where are you located?

    Would you mind If I did a write up on my blog about your work? (refering to your website.) I can’t wait to show your blog to my fellow designers at work! :)

    look foward to hearing back from you. x kas

  58. Hi! I have to say something about the shortbread, as I am making the souffle as well as the cookies right now.

    The shortbread is wayyyyy to salty, and it fell apart, even after refrigeration. 23 grams of salt is more than two teaspoons, so I should have been wary. It’s sadly inedible.

    I’m making the souffle right now, ill tell you how it goes.

  59. Aran says:

    Duchess of Dirt- I’m so sorry!! I just checked the recipe and yes, that is a major typo. It’s 2 grams of sea salt. I have never seen 23 grams of salt in any cookie before! I’m so sorry that it ruined those ingredients. It should come together though. it was most likely the extra salt that made it fall apart.

    Let me know how the souffles turn out and thanks for letting me know about the typo.

  60. Helene says:

    I never made a soufflé and never eaten one. I would eat yours anytime.

  61. Anonymous says:

    Here is the site for those cups, but I don’t know if they are available in the US, doesn’t look like it.

  62. sakki says:

    Hi there!!
    thanks for posting this and all the other wonderful magic – culinary and visual – that you are creating!

    I wanted to ask: for how many mini souffles (people) is this recipe?

    If I want to make it for my mother in laws small dinner party, can I have everything ready in advance and just pop it in the oven just 15 min before it’s due?

    Your recipe makes be dare be brave!!!!

    Thanks so much!

  63. Aran says:

    Hi Monicka- for the souffles, you can make the base the morning of the party and refrigerate it until an hour before you are supposed to bake them. Let the base come to room temperature an hour before the party, fill the ramekins and bake the souffles right before you are going to bake them. That is how we used to do it at the restaurant. This recipe will make about 16 souffles or so, depending on the size. Good luck!

  64. just beautiful. I’ve been wanting to try to make souffle for quite some time now. Now I have the perfect opportunity!

  65. monicka says:

    Thank you Aran for your enlightening reply.
    I will definitely try it! (and report!)

  66. Your photos are simply dreamy. I could stare at them all day. :)

  67. The souffles are sooooo beautiful!

  68. Natalie says:

    are the little blue cups you bake these in ceramic or paper? if paper, where do you get them?

  69. Aran says:

    Natalie- they are ceramic. thanks!

  70. Jennifer says:

    I am having a meyer lemon roundup next week on my blog so please submit your recipes/hptos as I would love to feature them.

  71. Maggie says:

    What a wonderful recipe! I made this tonight (the souffle and the cookies) and it turned out PERFECTLY. Sadly, I didn’t have any limoncello on hand, so substituted lemon extract. I will definitely try it with the limoncello once I either have time to make my own or can pick some up.

    Thank you!

  72. […] These inspired me to vow to make more soufflés. […]

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