I want to make a cheese souffle!
I've never made a souffle. Bought a souffle dish a few years ago but still never made a souffle. We live most of the year at 6500' elevation and I wasn't about to lose my souffle virginity with altitude being a factor (not the kind of Mile High Club I'd be interested in!) So now I'm at about 1000' elevation and I'm ready. I've found a lot of souffle recipes here but most don't seem to be from 'hounds themselves. Does anyone have one that they really like? I have ZERO interest in dessert souffles and also want to do one large one, not individual ones. Any special tips would be appreciated also. I've waited a very long time to do this and only since immersing myself (way too much) in CH do I think I might be ready. Hey, I can make pasta dough now which I couldn't until recently. Any help will be SO appreciated. Thanks all.
Here's mine (made many times with success!):
3 egg yolks
4 egg whites
2T softened butter
2T grated parm
1/2 cup gruyere (I've used other cheeses too)
3T unsalted butter
1C milk warmed
1/2t ground white pepper (black would work too)
Oven at 350
- Butter a 4c souffle dish and sprinkle the parm to cover the sides.
- Make bechamel (melt butter and after foaming ends, add flour and whisk until cooked (~2min). Slowly add milk while whisking and simmer until thickened. Season with S&P, nutmeg, and cayenne.)
- Add eggs one at a time to the bechamel, stirring after each.
- Stir in grated cheese
- Beat egg whites until stiff and glosssy
- Gently fold in egg whites into the bechamel base in 4 batches
- Fill dish
- Make collar with parchment paper or foil (be sure to butter and sprinkle with parm)
- Cook about 30 min - until a skewer comes out clean
- Remove collar and serve (I like a cheese sauce to complement)
- Fold in the eggs by drawing down the spatula from 12 to 6 (clock) and fold over. Turn bowl 1/4 turn and repeat. Do this 4 times. Key is to fully incorporate the eggs without breaking the foam.
- Keep oven closed for at least 25 minutes
Stupid question? Will the butter allow the collar to adhere to the dish? Can any part of this be prepared in advance? Or should I begin it and just keep going til it's in the oven? See, this all seems really scary to me :) With a cheese sauce,do you let each guest serve the souffle and add sauce? Do you serve immediately upon removing from oven? Shall I expect it to collapse a bit? Sorry to be such a pest. Thanks tons.
re: c oliver
Never a pest!
Attach the collar to the dish by tying a string around it at the top of the dish (most souffle dishes have a small edge toward the top to facilitate this). The collar gets attached to the outside of the dish.
I've only served it as a first course and went from make to serve. If it were to be held, I'd prepare the entire dish ahead and cook it when it should be served.
I've had great luck with this recipe not collapsing. If it does, it usually leans to one side but still tastes great. As an aside, the whites are whipped in a copper bowl. I'm not sure if this helps with the overall resistance of the whites to collapse.
When served, take two spoons and insert them both at the top of the souffle and pull apart. Either serve each person from the center with sauce at the side or pour in the sauce and then serve.
If you can't find the answers in the other thread below, I'm happy to help. Good luck and good eating!
Since you've got the souffle pan and want to use it, this may not appeal, but I make a great skillet souffle. You start it on the stove top in a non-stick pan and then finish in the oven. I've made it with goat cheese and blue many, many times and it is always wonderful. I'd be happy to post the recipe if it appeals, but will understand if the lure of your souffle pan is too high.
re: c oliver
Trying to post this for the second time ...
Here is the recipe for the skillet souffle. I play with it - sometimes use blue cheese, sometimes goat (probably other kinds would be fine too). I also often use thyme instead of the basil.
8 large eggs, separated
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
1/4 tsp. salt
4 ounces fresh goat or blue cheese (about 1/2 cup)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil (or thyme)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
fresh ground pepper
2 tablespoons butter
Preheat oven to 375.
In a large bowl beat the egg whites, cream of tartar and salt until stiff by not dry (depends on humidity how long this will take, but I'd say about 15 minutes is my usual). In a different bowl beat the egg yolks for about 2 minutes - until thick. Stir in the cheese, herbs and pepper. Fold in the egg whites in two batches stirring until just combined.
Melt butter in a 10-ince ovenproof skillet. Add the egg mixture and cook for about 3 minutes. Transfer skillet to the oven and bake for 18 minutes. Souffle should be puffed and golden.
Some tips from an older thread on another savory souffle. I am happy to mail the spreadsheet to you if you like.
Basic foundational truth: souffles are a breeze when you master mise en place. They can be prepared ahead, for a pittance, and the only trick is to make sure it can be served when it's done cooking.
I like the Joy of Cooking souffle recipes. They must be served immediately! And parts of it can be made in advance. I know you don't want to make a dessert souffle, but the two I have tried can be made completely and refrigerated up to a couple of hours before baking.