Make a Soufflé? It Isn’t Hard – Really!
Anyone ever actually make a soufflé? No?
That was me until early in my culinary career. I was working as a food editor and decided I needed to attempt the feat. Not admitting my plans to co-workers, I purchased eggs, cheese, milk and got busy. It was so easy, I wondered why I had deprived myself of this billowy creation. Soufflés are just slightly more difficult than scrambled eggs, but infinitely more interesting and tasty. If you’re intimidated by soufflés, read on and I think. Your fear will disappear!.
You don’t even need a soufflé dish to master soufflé making. Just follow the recipe and keep these few tips in mind.
- Crack the eggs and separate the yolks from the whites while they are cold. Then let the yolks and whites stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before starting. Eggs separate easier while cold, but warmer whites whip to higher peaks.
- Preheat the oven. It needs to be hot before placing the soufflé in it.
- Beat the whites in a scrupulously clean glass or metal bowl. Don’t use a plastic bowl or allow even a tiny speck of egg yolk to get into the whites. Small residues of fat from even clean plastic bowls or egg yolks interfere with whipping egg whites.
- Beating egg whites into peaks traps air in them. During baking the air expands, making your soufflé rise to glorious heights. So, this is an important step. Adding a little cream of tartar or lemon juice to your egg whites before beating increases their final volume. Use an electric mixer for beating. You can do it with a wire whisk but expect your arm to get tired. Stop beating when the egg whites form glossy, stiff peaks that stand straight when you pull the beaters out. (Insert photo of stiff beaten egg whites here.)
- Fold the stiff-beaten egg whites, one-third at a time, into the cheese mixture. Scoop the first portion of the whites on top of the cheese sauce. Using a rubber spatula slice down through the middle of the whites, across the bottom of the pan and bring the spatula up and over the top. Repeat just until the streaks of white disappear. Adding a portion at a time lightens the cheese mixture, making it easier to fold in the remaining whites.
- No opening of the oven door and peaking while your soufflé bakes. And serve it as soon as it comes out of the oven. Soufflés start to fall right away.
That’s it. Those are the secrets to making an awe-inspiring soufflé. Check out our Cheese Soufflé recipe. It’s like a giant cheese puff with a crispy top and fluffy filling. Add a tossed salad and crusty bread for an impressive dinner. We didn’t make it complicated—you can even use a simple casserole instead of a soufflé dish. You’re ready to. You can make that soufflé with confidence!.