For Mother’s Day, Hang Her the Moon!

6 05 2011

This spring was welcomed by a special full moon, the perigee, or super moon. Since the orbit of the moon is elliptical, there are times when it is closer; the time it is closest is known as the perigee and this year was the closest the moon has been since 1992. Ancient lore recounts how plants grown and harvested under the full moon were imbued with an extra potency and vibrancy. So we gathered some traditional harbingers of spring, who with that extra shot of moonshine deliver spring in a spoon.

Asparagus is one of the first springtime vegetables. The tender shoots are a great source of saponins. These compounds have both an anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor properties. Consumption of saponins is also correlated with improvements in the regulation of blood pressure and blood sugar. Asparagus is also a source of a unique carbohydrate compound, a type of polyfructan, known as inulin. Unlike other carbohydrates, inulin passes almost completely intact all the way to the large intestine, where it is broken down by our native, beneficial bacteria. This is associated with potentially better nutrient absorption and a potential lower risk of colon cancer. In addition, asparagus is a great source of vitamin k (a vitamin necessary for proper blood clotting), folate, vitamin A and C. And most importantly, in this soufflé it is indescribably delicious and perfect with a glass of bubbly.

Finish this off with a few strawberries dipped in Chambord Ganache and rolled in her favorite topping. Keep the bubbly coming for this one, too. It’s just what the doctor ordered for Mom!

Asparagus Parmesan Soufflé with Hollandaise
Makes two 8oz. servings
180 Calories; 9g Total Fat; 10g Total Carbohydrate

2 teaspoons unsalted butter, softened to grease ramekins
1/4 cup fine breadcrumbs to dust ramekins
4 large egg whites
8 ounces prepared asparagus; peeled, blanched*
1 leek, white part only, roughly chopped
3 Tbs grated Parmesan cheese + 1 Tbs for dusting
3 large egg yolks
1 tsp salt
½ tsp fresh ground pepper
1 tsp lemon zest

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Using the softened butter and breadcrumbs, grease and coat each 7oz ramekin. Using a stand mixer beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Place the blanched asparagus and leek in a food processor and puree. Combine the egg yolks with the asparagus and leek mixture, Parmesan, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Fold in 1/3 of the egg white mixture to lighten the egg yolk mixture. Then gently fold the egg yolk mixture into the remaining egg whites. Fill the ramekins with the batter, wiping along the top edge. Bake for ~ 15-18 minutes until puffy and firm.

Remove from the oven and sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the top of each soufflé. Break the top of each soufflé, and spoon in the warm Hollandaise Sauce. Serve immediately.

*To prepare the asparagus, peel the stems to remove the outer, stringier fibrous part. Place the asparagus in salted, boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove and place in an ice bath to stop the cooking process. Roughly chop.

123 Hollandaise
Serving Size 3/4 oz
110 Calories; 12g Total Fat; 0g Carbohydrate

1 stick unsalted butter (8Tbs)
Juice of 2 lemons
3 egg yolks

Combine the lemon juice and egg yolks. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan. Temper the egg yolks by adding the melted butter, a little at a time to the yolks, whisking constantly. When half the butter has been added combine the egg yolk-butter mixture with the rest of the melted butter in the saucepan. Stir over medium low heat until the sauce thickens, about 3- minutes.

Chambord Ganache Covered Strawberries
Serving Size 4 berries
80 Calories; 6g Total Fat; 8g Total Carbohydrate

1 oz (2 Tbs) of butter
7oz of heavy cream
8 oz fine chocolate, chopped
2 Tbs Chambord (or any other liqueur flavor you like)
1 pint fresh strawberries

Melt the butter and heat the cream together. Bring the mixture up to a boil. Pour over the chocolate and allow to sit for 1-2 minutes. Whip together and add the liqueur. Dip the strawberries in the Ganache. If you have any additional toppings like toasted coconut or crushed macadamia nuts roll the dipped berries in these and let set for several minutes or refrigerate until needed.

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2 responses

6 05 2011
tasteofbeirut

I can’t believe this luscious soufflé is so light in calories and so heavy in flavor! I would love this for mother’s day! the chocolate dessert too, especially with Chambord! This is such a refined meal, so fitting for the occasion!

7 05 2011
rebeccasubbiah

wow this looks so good, hope you get to Scotland soon I know its special for you Jennifer told me hugs Rebecca

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