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Make-ahead chocolate soufflés with orange cream

Jennifer Roberts for The Globe and Mail/jennifer roberts The Globe and Mail

There's nothing more romantic than staying home for a special Valentine's Day dinner - especially if the kids aren't around. I developed this menu specifically for the non-cooking partner in the relationship. This is a surefire way to wow your sweetheart. The recipes are easy, as is the shopping. Plus, some of the ingredients (truffles, chocolate, chilies) have an aphrodisiac quality guaranteed to help you feel the love.

These are similar to warm chocolate cake, but you can refrigerate them overnight before popping them into the oven. They are large enough to share; save one for breakfast.

Servings: Serves 2

Soufflés

3 ounces (90 grams) bittersweet chocolate, chopped

1/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces

3 egg yolks

1/3 cup sugar, plus two tablespoons

2 egg whites

Pinch salt

3 tablespoons flour

Orange cream

1/2 cup whipping cream

1 tablespoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon grated orange rind

Method

Butter and sugar two 4.5-inch ceramic ramekins.

Melt chocolate and butter in a heavy pot over low heat. Cool slightly and stir in egg yolks and 1/3 cup sugar.

Beat egg whites with a pinch of salt and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar until the mixture holds slightly drooping peaks. Fold flour into chocolate mixture and then egg whites. Divide batter between ramekins and refrigerate until needed.

Preheat oven to 375 F.

Bake cakes for 20 to 22 minutes or until tops of cakes have risen and cracked but are still slightly liquid in the middle. Remove from oven and either serve hot as is or run the point of a knife around the edge to help release soufflés. Invert ramekins onto serving plates and leave for 5 minutes or until cakes release.

Combine whipping cream, sugar and grated orange rind in a mixing bowl and whisk or beat just until slightly thickened. Serve with soufflés. Serves 2.

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