23 February 2011

chocolate souffles

I did it!  I finally made souffles!  I have always considered souffles one of the ultimate things to bake.  You know, everyone says how difficult they are because they are finicky and hard to bake.  Well, for the first year and a half of my baking experimentation, this reputation succeeded it scaring me off.
But, for Valentine's Day I wanted to make something new, delicious and even a little romantic.  So, I decided I was going to do it...I was making souffles.  Let me tell you folks, these souffles are pretty easy!  You can totally make these and probably even bake them right.  The trick is, to remember that they are supposed to be mousse-like and not cake-like.  Keeping that in mind, you'll do great!  Don't be scared off by the souffles!  Seriously, you are missing out if you're afraid to make them.  So give these a try.  The ingredients are simple and so is the recipe.  And no, of course you don't need a special occasion to make them....

What you'll need---
12 ounces of your favorite milk chocolate (I just got a 12-ish ounce hunk from our bulk section in the grocery store)
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream (ya, never said these were healthy...just AMAZING!!!)
2 egg yolks
Pinch of salt
6 egg whites, at room temp (if you have the time...mine weren't)
2 tbsp sugar

What you'll do---
Step 1: Butter your ramekins and then sprinkle them with sugar, tilting to coat completely and tapping out the extra (like you would flour in a cake pan).

I used 4 larger ramekins, probably about 1 1/2-cup ramekins and I had just enough batter.  The recipe I used calls for eight 3/4-cup ramekins.  Just use whatever you have though

Step 2: Combine the cream and sugar in a bowl that you can place over a double boiler.  

I just used my usual pot and put a smaller pot of simmering water underneath it.

Step 3: Melt the chocolate and cream over simmering water until it is nice and smooth.  Remove from heat and let it cool for just a couple of minutes.

Step 4: Stir the egg yolks and salt into the chocolate mixture.
Step 5: In another bowl (or the bowl of your stand mixer) beat the egg whites until soft peaks form.  Gradually add the 2 tbsp of sugar and continue beating until semi-firm peaks form (sorry, I forgot to take a picture of this)
Step 6: Using a rubber spatula, add 1/4 of the egg mixture to the chocolate mixture to lighten.  Then fold in the remaining egg whites in two additions.

If it's looking a little lumpy, don't worry like I did!  Just keep gently folding and everything will turn out great!

Step 7: Divide the mixture into your ramekins and set on a baking sheet to bake.

Step 8: Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes (for me, the magic time was 19 minutes).  The souffles are done when the puffed tops feel firm but not hard or stiff.  They should slightly bounce when you touch them (don't touch too hard or you'll deflate them!!!)

Mine rose but not as much as they could if you wrapped parchment paper around the ramekins with kitchen twine.  If you do that, they will rise a lot more.  I'm poor though I couldn't afford it.

Step 9: While the souffles are baking make some homemade whip cream to top them with (just add s few tablespoons of sugar to some whipping cream and beat away)
Step 10: Serve warm with the whip cream and ENJOY!!!!

These really are easy and incredible.  Try them out today and you'll be so glad you did.  Souffles really aren't as difficult as their reputation makes them out to be.  Just remember to serve them nice and warm or else they will start deflating...that's just what eggs do!  I hope you enjoy this one, because my husband and I sure did!

***Just a note---you can prepare the souffles in advance and put them in the refrigerator.  We only cooked two on Valentine's Day and then saved the rest and they still baked up great after leaving them in the fridge for a few days.  


  1. I wish you would bome make me some of these!

  2. not bome...come