It seems that soufflés often get
a bad rap as being a difficult dish to make. Horror stories
of fallen soufflés and other culinary disasters often
come to mind when considering to make this oh-so delicate
French classic. Yet a soufflé is actually a very simple
thing to make. It consists of very few ingredients and somehow
magically transforms into a light and airy masterpiece once
The word soufflé comes from the French
word souffler which means "to blow up" or informally
"to puff up" which is exactly what happens to the
combination of custard and egg whites. Every soufflé
is made from 2 basic components: 1) a base of flavored cream
sauce or a puree and 2) beaten egg whites. The base provides
flavor and the whites provide the "puff".
In this months on-line class wed
like to demonstrate how truly simple it is to make a soufflé,
whether savory or sweet and hopefully demystify and perhaps
make it not such a scary dish to make!
Techniques & Tips You Will
- 7 Simple Steps to a Great Soufflé
- Extra Tips for Soufflé Success
Whether you are making a sweet or savory
soufflé the basic steps are essentially the same. It
really can all be boiled down to 7 simple steps.
7 Simple Steps to a Great Soufflé:
Step 1: Preheat the oven
|Step 2: Butter the soufflé
dish or ramekins.
|Step 3: Sprinkle
the dish with sugar, cheese depending on your recipe (optional)
|Step 4: Cook the base; either
a relatively basic custard sauce or with a puree
|Step 5: Season the
base with zest, chocolate, fruit, or add cheeses, corn
puree, or whatever flavorings, herbs and spices you want
the soufflé to taste like.
|Step 6: Beat the egg whites
until soft peaks form. Fold one-quarter of the egg whites
into the base to lighten then fold in the remaining egg
|Step 7: Bake. To test the soufflé,
turn the oven light on and make sure that the top appears
browned, crusty and dry. If it does, then take a knife
blade and insert it not the center. If it comes out moist
and clean, then the soufflé is ready. Otherwise,
carefully, slide it back into the oven and let it bake
another 5-10 minutes.
It is really that simple! Once you get the
basic steps down it can be fun to experiment with both sweet
and savory soufflé dishes. This month, new to Glutenfreeda.com
we have an Orange Soufflé which is a light and airy
(as with all soufflés) soufflé dish that has
the essence of orange and lemon and literally melts in your
mouth with each bite. Looking to the savory side, we have
an awesome Goat Cheese Soufflé. This soufflé
is a little richer since it incorporates goat cheese, Parmigiano
Reggiano cheese and sharp white Cheddar cheese and the perfect
touch of thyme. It is the perfect lunch or light dinner when
paired with a salad.
Other favorite soufflés on Glutenfreeda.com
include a rich Chocolate Soufflé for those chocolate
lovers and a heavenly Raspberry Soufflé. And my all
time favorite is our Corn Soufflé. This soufflé
takes advantage of a sweet corn puree and incorporates it
into a light and airy soufflé. The soufflé is
further complimented by a warm puddle of rich cream (not for
the diet conscience person but certainly a special treat for
those who occasionally splurge!).
Extra Tips for Soufflé Success
- First you must have a perfectly clean
bowl and beaters for the egg whites.
- Make sure the egg whites are at room
temperature before beating.
- With an electric mixer make sure to start
at a slow speed until the egg whites begin to foam. Slowly
increasing the speed until they look smooth, shiny and they
will hold a soft peak. If they will not reach this point
or they appear grainy and clump together then start again,
beginning with a clean bowl and clean beaters.
- To avoid a leathery crust, make sure
that the soufflé is baked on the lowest rack and
not in the middle of the oven.
- Once the soufflé is in the oven
leave it alone do not disturb "the beast"!
If you open the oven door you risk the possibility of it
- Serve the soufflé at once.
So as you can see a soufflé is not
something to fear. It really is an easy dish and certainly
and impressive touch to any meal.