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These souffles are very rich and luscious. The base can be made ahead, but there's no avoiding the last minute nature of this--you must serve as soon as they are ready. Your guests will, I am sure, find the wait worthwhile.
- To prepare the base, heat the orange juice to lukewarm in a heavy saucepan.
- Whisk the egg yolks with 3 ounces (90 grams) of the sugar in a large mixing bowl. Whisk in the flour and warm orange juice, then return the mixture to the saucepan.
- Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the custard is thick. Do not allow it to boil. Remove from the heat.
- Stir in the chocolate until completely melted. Stir in the liqueur. Cover this base mixture with plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming. Hold for use at room temperature. (Unused base can be kept overnight in the refrigerator; it should be brought to room temperature before mixing with the egg whites.).
- To prepare the soufflés, brush 4-fluid-ounce (120-milliliter) sized ramekins with melted butter and dust with granulated sugar.
- Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C). Place a sheet pan in the oven, onto which you will place the soufflés for baking. (This makes it easier to remove the hot soufflé cups from the oven.).
- Whip the egg whites to stiff peaks with the remaining 1 ounce (30 grams) of sugar. Fold the whites into the chocolate base and spoon the mixture into the prepared ramekins. The ramekins should be filled to within 1/4 inch (6 millimeters) of the rim.
- Smooth the top of each soufflé with a spatula and bake immediately.
- The soufflés are done when well risen and golden brown on top and the edges appear dry, approximately 12 minutes. Do not touch a soufflé to test doneness.
- Sprinkle the soufflés with powdered sugar if desired and serve immediately.