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Recipe File

Dark Chocolate Souffle

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Just the mention of chocolate soufflé can conjure up feelings of decadence and luxury. The ability to prepare a chocolate soufflé usually commands the admiration of the diners. However, the difficulty in preparing a soufflé has been somewhat exaggerated over time, and, although, most people won't even attempt it, soufflés can be quite simple to make. This dark chocolate soufflé is easy to make and can be the perfect finale to a romantic dinner.

This recipe is primarily dependant on dark chocolate, so be sure to use the best quality dark chocolate that you enjoy. I like Dagoba and Scharffen Berger chocolate.

Assemble the ingredients: 1 ounce (30 mL) heavy cream, 4 oz. (115 g) 70% cacao dark chocolate, 1/2 tablespoon (7 g) butter, 2 large eggs (separated into whites and yolks), a dash of cream of tartar, and 1/6 cup (35 g) sugar.


Prepare two 6 ounce (180 mL) soufflé ramekins by applying a layer of cold butter to the interior of the ramekins. Use your fingers to apply an even, thin coat of butter to all parts of the ramekin including the sides. Pour some granulated sugar into the ramekin and shake and roll the ramekin to coat the bottom and sides with sugar. Several sources claim that the butter and sugar help the souffle rise, but this is not actually true. The butter and sugar are really there to add flavor of the crust and aid in the release of the soufflé from the ramekin (if desired).


Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).

Bring some water to a boil in a pot. Once the water boils, reduce the heat until the water just simmers. Place a small metal bowl over the pot to form a double boiler.

Melt the butter, cream, and chocolate in the double boiler.


Stir to help the melting. Once the chocolate has melted, turn off the heat.


Whisk the two egg yolks into the chocolate.


The resulting mixture may look like the chocolate seized, but don't worry, it will smooth out once the egg whites are folded in.


In a medium bowl, beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar until the egg whites reach soft peaks. (The cream of tartar is added to egg whites to increase the acidity slightly. This allows the proteins to bind together a bit more easily making stronger bubbles to form the basis of the egg white foam.) This can be accomplished with a bit of effort with a whisk (took me about 5 minutes) or a hand mixer with a whisk attachment. The term soft peaks means the foam has reached the point where the egg whites stand up when the whisk (or your finger) is lightly dipped into the foam and gently lifted out. The tip of the peak should droop. If the tip stands up straight, then it has reached the stiff peaks stage.


Add the sugar to the egg whites and continue to beat until you reach stiff peaks. Adding the whites a little at a time, fold them into the chocolate mixture.


Without over mixing, fold the remaining egg whites into the batter.


Pour the batter into the two prepared ramekins. Fill them at least 3/4 of the way up. They are now ready to be baked.


The best part of making soufflés is that they can be prepared to this point beforehand and refrigerated for up to three days. On the day you plan to serve the soufflés, take them out of the refrigerator about two hours before you plan to serve them so they can warm up a little. If you don't take them out of the fridge early, then bake them for an extra minute or two.

Place the ramekins on a baking pan and place the pan in the oven on a rack set in the middle position. Bake the soufflés for 15 minutes at 375°F (190°C). As it bakes, the air bubbles we've incorporated into the batter will start to expand, causing the entire souffle to rise. After fifteen minutes, the soufflé will have risen up out of the ramekin (the photo shows an example of a ramekin filled to the 3/4 full level). (Greater lift can be achieved by using three egg whites instead of two).



Serve immediately in the ramekin. (Ramekins will be hot, so use some hand protection to transfer the soufflé.) As the soufflé cools, it will drop and become more dense. An alternate method of service is to remove the soufflé from the ramekin. This easiest accomplished once the soufflé has cooled a bit and a knife has been run along the sides. The soufflé can be inverted and tapped out onto a catching hand and then deposited onto a plate. Reheating the soufflé at this point will allow the air bubbles to expand again and the soufflé will rise back up (although not to its former size).


Dark Chocolate Soufflé (serves two; recipe can be doubled)
Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C) and prepare two 6 oz. (180 mL) ramekins with butter and sugar
4 oz. (115 g) 70% cacao chocolatemelt in double boilerwhiskfold in egg whitespour into ramekinsbake 375°F (190°C) 15 min.
1/2 Tbs. (7 g) butter
1 oz. (30 mL) heavy cream
2 large egg yolks
2-3 large egg whiteswhisk to soft peakswhisk to stiff peaks
a dash (1/16 tsp.) cream of tartar
1/6 cup (35 g) sugar

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Written by Michael Chu
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143 comments on Dark Chocolate Souffle:(Post a comment)

On February 13, 2006 at 11:49 AM, Michael Chu said...
I was hoping to be able to provide this recipe earlier so readers of CfE would have time to prepare if they wanted to make this for Valentine's Day, but unfortunately, I didn't have much free time until now.

Hopefully, many will still find this recipe useful.


On February 13, 2006 at 04:47 PM, an anonymous reader said...
So what is is it that causes a souffle to fall as they are notoriously wont to do.


On February 13, 2006 at 07:26 PM, Michael Chu said...
re: causes for falling

If there is sudden or massive shock to the souffle (dropping it a couple inches might do it) or a blast of cold air could cause the air bubbles to collapse. Larger souffles (such as a 1-1/2 quart souffle) are more delicate because the sides of the souffle are where most of the structural support exists (the sides are cooked more and form a hard, but delicate, crust).


On February 13, 2006 at 08:53 PM, jeanthibca (guest) said...
Subject: PAM istead of butter
You should use Pam instead of butter in the ramequin, so the soufflé sticks less to it. It is has good, but you still have to put sugar.


On February 14, 2006 at 03:10 PM, MissM (guest) said...
Subject: My Favorite Dessert!!
Thank you SO much for this. I haven't had one in so many years, and they're my favorite, I can hardly wait to try it. And thank you SO much for this blog, its excellent!

Long Time Lurker,
MissM
http://oncomputerstips.blogspot.com


On February 15, 2006 at 02:39 AM, LAN3 (guest) said...
In my experience (which is witnessing my parents make soufflé-- I'm a batchelor and do not own ramekins) it is the temperature change that causes them to fall-- in short, never open the dang oven. The egg foam is what's holding all the air in, and until it cooks to firmness (so the soufflé can stand without relying on trapping the air), the air needs to stay warm. You don't have to tiptoe around the kitchen, but you should take the basketball outside, just in case.

Anyway, a fallen soufflé tastes almost as good-- it's denser and ends up tasting too rich, so go ahead and serve smaller portions with something else, like ice cream, and tell anyone who won't know better that it's fondant.


On February 15, 2006 at 05:01 PM, googoosh (guest) said...
Thanks for the reccipe, my friend bad day today, I made it for her to cheer her up :)


On February 15, 2006 at 06:20 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: High-altitude souffles
One problem I've noted especially with souffles is that when cooking at altitude, they do in fact live up to their temperamental reputation. Most substitutions are geared towards cakes, which either don't work with souffles, or render them chewy and tough. Any suggestions for cooking a souffle at nearly 7,000 feet? I'm frankly too discouraged at this point to even try.

BTW, your capcha is pretty easy to break, even automatically. You might want to investigate upgrading it. Of course, the problem with good capchas is that even humans have a hard time, so as long as it's working for you, nevermind.


On February 15, 2006 at 09:12 PM, Alexandra (guest) said...
Subject: Falling souffles
I've heard that since souffles are so sensitive to temperature changes, making them in an electric oven usually produces a better result than a gas oven since the temperature is steadier. I've never made a souffle, and have always been scared to try since I have a gas oven. Is this a reasonable concern?


On February 16, 2006 at 05:45 PM, Tom (guest) said...
Subject: multiplying recipe
The recipe states it can be doubled. Are any non-linear adjustments needed to triple or quadruple the recipe? Thanks.


On February 16, 2006 at 06:33 PM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: multiplying recipe
Tom wrote:
The recipe states it can be doubled. Are any non-linear adjustments needed to triple or quadruple the recipe? Thanks.

Feel free to triple and quadruple when a recipe says "can be doubled". (It's easier to understand than - can be multiplied.) The length of time it takes for your chocolate to melt, etc. will be different however, but as long as you use 6 oz. ramekins, the baking time should remain about the same (unless you're making 80 of these and the oven has multiple layers of cold souffles when you start baking...


On February 21, 2006 at 07:52 PM, lmerrill (guest) said...
Subject: Delicious and rich!
I made six of these little beauties last night. I did add the extra egg whites, and the extra puffiness was impressive. None of my guests, save one, could finish the whole thing, however. I served it with loosely whipped and sweetened cream. It was my first effort at any kind of souffle and I am grateful for the instructions you provide and illustrations as well.


On February 22, 2006 at 05:51 PM, Gin (guest) said...
I tried this over the weekend. I had used 3 ramekins instead of 2 as it appears that I have too much leftover batter. I didn't want to overfill the ramkins also since I'm not sure how much it rises. It turned out wonderful. Next time I will try it with 3 egg whites instead to see how puffy it can get. Thanks!


On February 28, 2006 at 02:54 PM, trist (guest) said...
Subject: chocolate molten cake
hi michael!

as much as i lurrrrrve chocolate souffle, i was wondering if you have a recipe for "chocolate molten cake" instead? i would like to make one based on your recipe. :)

trist


On February 28, 2006 at 06:34 PM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: chocolate molten cake
trist wrote:
as much as i lurrrrrve chocolate souffle, i was wondering if you have a recipe for "chocolate molten cake" instead? i would like to make one based on your recipe. :)

I'll start experimenting...


On March 10, 2006 at 12:52 AM, TopfUziel (guest) said...
Subject: Sauce?
Any ideas for a sauce to go with the souffle? When I've had it in a restaurant, it's sometimes served with different sauces...maybe raspberry or grand marnier?
The great thing about this recipe is preparing it before hand!
Thanks!


On March 12, 2006 at 10:16 PM, bmc01 (guest) said...
Subject: suaces for souffles
I have a friend who is a graduate of the Culinary Institute and he always makes "hard butter" for the souffles. Just a teaspoon of this on the souffle, and it tastes like heaven. I don't have the recipe, do you have one?

I have found the hardiest thing about making souffles, is fear. They are not that hard, but they are intimidating.


On April 18, 2006 at 11:47 PM, an anonymous reader said...
So just to be clear, when you write that you used 70% cacao dark chocolate, is that a sweetened chocolate or an unsweetened baking chocolate?


On April 19, 2006 at 06:19 PM, Michael Chu said...
That would be a bar of sweetened super-dark chocolate.


On June 20, 2006 at 10:38 PM, Olive (guest) said...
Subject: Great recipe!
I've made this recipe twice now and LOVE it. The most amazing chocolate dessert I've ever had. And I made it! Guests are very impressed. Thank you for a great recipe.

BTW, the first time, I made it in a gas oven and it was fine. Maybe because the ramekins are pretty small, the souffles were pretty sturdy.


On July 02, 2006 at 06:44 PM, Spec (guest) said...
Subject: Souffle ramekins!
Heya, I was wondering what I should change if I wanted to make one very large souffle in a large ramekin. Cook it longer?

I've made this recipe with the smaller ramekins countless times and it is the best. Good work :p


On August 30, 2006 at 03:46 PM, Furtis (guest) said...
I made these today and came out good, the inside I don't think cooked properly as it was a bit liquidy. Maybe I over mixed it or the fact I used cooking milk chocolate instead, I'm not sure but they still tasted great.

Thanks for the recipe. You illustrated well it and explained each step which was very helpful. I was wondering, if I wanted to make a plain Souffle could I use this recipe but omit the Chocolate mixture?

I'm gunna give it another try another time, it's not something you can eat often. Thanks.


On September 01, 2006 at 05:59 PM, Lilandra (guest) said...
Subject: We made!
We made.
Here's a picture

The first night, my maths had some extra so...we baked some in a larger dish and maybe too long so it was a bit dry. The next night, I made sauce and it tasted good tho it might not have needed sauce.

Thank you *very* much!
Lily


On December 05, 2006 at 08:22 PM, Joyce (guest) said...
Subject: chocolate souffle
I've recently mastered making creme brulee which I always thought would be extremely difficult to do. I think now it's time to try something different and something I've never even had. I already have the ramekins, which is great. You've made it look really easy. Thanks!

-Joyce


On December 17, 2006 at 08:02 AM, Ben Brockert (guest) said...
With regard to cooking a souffle at high altitude, you might try whisking the eggs less, so that there is less air to expand (or over-expand), or over-mixing it when incorporating the mixtures to reduce the amount of air enclosed.


On January 20, 2007 at 05:00 PM, AeroChef said...
Subject: : )
I went ahead and made this recipe... it came out top notch. : )

I like the whipped cream idea from a previous user...


On January 27, 2007 at 04:10 PM, JD (guest) said...
Subject: whipping the egg whites
The first time I made this, I didn't understand what was supposed to happen with the egg whites (being a neophyte in the kitchen), so, I just beat them with a fork for a few minutes, added sugar, beat them a little more, poured in, and baked. The result was, essentially, chocolate molten cake that wasn't bad, but certainly wasn't souffle.

The second time, my wife was home, and she showed me how to beat the egg whites correctly. We used Ghiradelli baking milk chocolate instead of dark chocolate, and the result was an excellent souffle that we and our friends enjoyed.


On February 04, 2007 at 11:31 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: souffle
this recipe seems excellent! thanks so much for posting it and the photos are very useful

quick question, will it make a difference if we use milk chocolate instead of dark chocolate?


On February 04, 2007 at 11:33 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Oh and what is the tartar cream? do they have it at regular grociery stores?


On February 12, 2007 at 08:05 PM, pam (guest) said...
Subject: Heavenly Chocolate Souffle
I you want to buy a very good souffle you can find it online at www.heavenlysouffle.com. delicious


On February 17, 2007 at 03:32 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Souffle life?
Serve immediately?!!!!!! Is there a way to store them for a day or two? Fridge/Freezer? I have searched high and low on-line for hours and no luck. No one knows the answer, please help!


On February 19, 2007 at 11:10 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: beware of the extra egg whites
i used 3 eggs whites instead of 2 to try to achieve extra rise. the extra rise was minimal and it made the texture spongy which i did not like.


On March 01, 2007 at 09:43 PM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: Souffle life?
Anonymous wrote:
Serve immediately?!!!!!! Is there a way to store them for a day or two? Fridge/Freezer? I have searched high and low on-line for hours and no luck. No one knows the answer, please help!

They are perfectly safe to eat if you store them in an airtight container at cool room temeprature for a day or two - but you'll never get the same rise out of it as you did when you first baked them. Reheating will cause the bubbles to inflate again, but not nearly as much as the first time. Reheat in the microwave or in the oven. (Microwave seems to actually work better for me, but make sure your ramekins are microwave safe).

In general, a reheated souffle will be noticed by your guests and is not the same experience, so prepare as many other dishes are you can before and plan the souffle to be pulled out of the oven minutes before serving.


On March 17, 2007 at 09:18 PM, Bugsy151 (guest) said...
Subject: Milk Chocolate Vs. 70% Dark Chocolate
In response to the question regarding milk chocolate vs. the 70% dark chocolate specified in the recipe:

There is a much higher fat (or similar substance that varies depending on quality) content in milk chocolate than in other darker chocolates. In short, the darker the chocolate, the less other stuff and the more cocoa. The fat will lend extra liquid to the recipe and nudge the end result towards being soupy. I believe that this is why 70% cocoa dark chocolate is specified. You could use a higher % cocoa content chocolate, although it is hard to find. You would want to add slightly more sugar to offset the increased bitterness. Always use quality chocolate as cheaper chocolates (like Hershey's) actually uses cocoa substitutes that take away from the deadly nature of the chocolate souffle.


On May 10, 2007 at 03:49 PM, an anonymous reader said...
I made the chocolate souffles for a dinner party last week. I quadrupled the recipe, and it gave enough batter for 12 souffles (I made 10 and put the left over mix in the freezer - I will see if it still works after freezing later.) I used Ghirardelli 60% cacao bitter-sweet chocolate which gave a very dark and chocolatey result. I served the souffles with a scoop each of pistachio gelato (store bought), and some marinated strawberries on the side (not sure what they were marinated in - my friend provided them).

I made the batter and put into the dishes ahead of time, refrigerated it for a couple of hours, then left it out to warm up before baking for about another hour and a half. The rise was good, and the results delicious!


On May 21, 2007 at 01:15 PM, Don317 (guest) said...
Subject: Souffle
The recipe is good, very simple, very good results. A finishing touch is to dust the top of the souffle with confectioners sugar after it comes from the oven. Just put a some of the sugar in a fine sieve, than lightly tap it while holding it over the top of the souffle.


On June 04, 2007 at 03:24 AM, Louise (guest) said...
Subject: hard butter
The person who asked about hard butter: I wonder if that's what my family calls "hard sauce" and makes to serve with the flamed plum pudding at Christmas Dinner.

Hard sauce is butter, softened at room temperature, with lots of sugar and brandy and a bit of vanilla whipped into it, and then put back in the refrigerator.

You can then put a little dollop of it on a hot dessert, and it melts and gives you a wonderful aroma and flavour and alcohol fumes.

Leftover hard sauce is also very good on toasted raisin bagels, or (if your leftovers last a long time) on Hot Cross Buns at Easter.


On June 16, 2007 at 02:05 PM, Scott Seltzer (guest) said...
Subject: Muffin tins ok
I'm not so sophisticated as to own ramekins and once I had my thoughts on the chocolate souffle I couldn't wait, so I used muffin tins and the recipe turned out fine.


On July 05, 2007 at 06:39 AM, LorraineB (guest) said...
Subject: a nice sauce for chocolate souffle
Tonight I made chocolate souffles and for the sauce I combined over medium heat (all amounts are *totally* approximate - I just started combining stuff until I had the right consistency - a thick syrup):

1 T butter
3 T regular sugar
4 T Cointreau
1 t Angostura bitters

Melt the butter in the pan, add the sugar and allow it to dissolve, stirring with a whisk. Add the cointreau and bitters, reduce the heat, cook slowly. I then removed it from the heat and let it sit while the souffle baked and we had dinner. All told it probably sat in the still-warm pan for about an hour. I think the alcohol cooked off as it tasted much more mellow in the end. I pooled this sauce on a plate and plopped my 2 little chocolate souffles on it, then dusted it all with a bit of confectioner's sugar (powdered sugar).

An alternative to the Cointreau would be orange extract, although the flavor would not be as complex and intriguing as it was with the cointreau.


On July 07, 2007 at 12:15 PM, Beth^__^ (guest) said...
Subject: Delicious!
Asbeing only 14 and being able to make these soufflés (with a little help from my mum, ofcourse xD) is, I feel, a big achievement for myself. As I am taking Food Technology for my GCSE studies, I decided to try and bake something that lots of people are very scared to make - a souffle! So before I made one in class I decided to try it out the night before, using your recipe, and the results were fantastic! A little over risen, but that can be improved. My mum & sister both loved them, so I was then excited to make them at school.
The only problem was that I used a higher concentrate of chocolate, and being rather inexperienced at souffle's, I did not add any more sugar, so the results were very bitter. But my food teacher still liked it, so that's always a plus ^__^ & I now know that next time I'll stick with the 70% chocolate.

Thankyou very much for this recipe, it is very easy to follow and having the pictures is an excellent help ^-^


On July 16, 2007 at 02:34 AM, Julius (guest) said...
Subject: Chocolate souffle
Thanks for your blog. It really helped me with my souffle. Pictures and notes are posted at:

http://occasionalbaker.blogspot.com/

Cheers!


On July 27, 2007 at 09:23 PM, roser17 (guest) said...
Subject: for how many?
how many souffles does this recipe make? or how many will it be enough for?


On July 28, 2007 at 03:42 AM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: for how many?
roser17 wrote:
how many souffles does this recipe make? or how many will it be enough for?

It's for two, but the recipe scales easily.


On August 06, 2007 at 11:56 PM, Reldan said...
Thanks for the recipe, detailed instructions, and pictures. I've never made a souffle before and just got done testing this out (and enjoying the results). I'll be making this for my girlfriend in the near future.

My substitutions were to use a simple store-bought Semi-Sweet Ghireldeli chocolate bar instead of 70% Bittersweet, although I do plan on trying it with a nice 70% chocolate now that I'm confident I can make this come out right. I also used vanilla sugar (made by keeping vanilla beans in a container with sugar) which I felt added a mellow vanilla taste that complimented the chocolate quite well.

I had significant problems beating the 2 egg whites in my kitchenaid which were solved by adding a 3rd egg white and a pinch of salt. I think there simply was not enough of the whites with only two eggs to physically fill the mixing bowl to the height that the whisk spins. Once the 3rd egg was in, it only took about 2 minutes for soft peaks and then another minute for stiff peaks to form.

My girlfriend is lactose intolerant, so I'm hoping that the roughly 1/2 oz. of heavy cream in the recipe won't be too much for her - do you have any suggestions for a good substitution though?


On September 30, 2007 at 11:39 PM, malweth said...
I doubled it... the recipe came out fine for my first try (it could have cooked longer, perhaps), but it was far TOO chocolatey. I realize what I'm saying, but stick to smaller ramekins for this one - the 4.5" one (about 10 oz?) was too much for me. I'll be modifying for less chips next time.

I poured a Creme Anglaise into the souffle after cooking. The Anglaise was modified with a fist-full of chips (I used the 60% Ghiardelli). I also used dashes of Grand Marnier and Godiva Liquors in the Anglaise.


On October 18, 2007 at 05:26 AM, Paul (guest) said...
Subject: Cream of tarter
In answer to a question above, I read earlier tonight that the cream of tarter in the egg whites adds acidity and tends to toughen them a bit, so they are less fragile.


On October 18, 2007 at 05:30 AM, Paul (guest) said...
Subject: What if
What happens to the souffle if you add too much (and you get the other ingredients right):

Chocolate?
Egg yolk?
Sugar?
milk?

What if you add too little of each?


On November 08, 2007 at 10:44 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Large size choco souffle??
I am making tomorrow a LARGE size chocolate souffle... as i don't have any small ramekins!!

I am very hopeful that it will turn out alright... but have no idea.

if anyone has any experience w/ this please let me know! If it is a total disaster I will go buy some (albiet grudgingly!). I think the souffle dish i have woudl be a 4xrecipe size... so it will be 8 eggs, etc etc... quite large... it is for a lot of people and well, we'll see...

If no-one responds (which i hope they do!!!) I'll post my results... and if they do respond and i am encouraged to try it i'll post my results!! Could be interesting...

Thanks
Anne

:P


On November 11, 2007 at 05:39 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Quote:
Oh and what is the tartar cream? do they have it at regular grociery stores?

The purpose has been explained above, but as for what it is and where to find it -- cream of tartar is a white powder that you'll find in the baking aisle or spices section of most grocery stores. It's actually a biproduct of fermenting grape juice, so I don't know why they call it a "cream", but there you have it.


On November 17, 2007 at 04:56 PM, an anonymous reader said...
When i made this recipe, i used a large ramekin..it turned out fine, if a little soft in the center.


On December 09, 2007 at 11:42 PM, Linda O (guest) said...
Subject: Chocolate Souffle
Thank you! My first souffle and it was bliss.


On January 02, 2008 at 03:51 PM, chefperson (guest) said...
Subject: alternatives to ramekins?
i don't own any ramekins at home...would it be possible to use another container to bake it in? like erm....cupcake liners?

and also, is it ok to omit the cream of tartar?


On January 02, 2008 at 07:29 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Silicone
I know that souffles are usually baked in ceramic ramekins, but I have silicone muffin cups. Does anyone know if that will work, or if the heat transferring power of the ceramic is important.

Thanks.


On January 03, 2008 at 08:18 PM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: alternatives to ramekins?
chefperson wrote:
i don't own any ramekins at home...would it be possible to use another container to bake it in? like erm....cupcake liners?

and also, is it ok to omit the cream of tartar?


The easy one first - yes you can omit the cream of tartar. That helps you beat the eggs whites without overbeating / having them begin to collapse, but you can do it without the acid.

As to the cupcake liners, I don't know - never tried. Supposedly, ceramic ramekins are important due to several reasons. 1) They heat up slowly, 2) retain a lot of heat so they cool slowly, 3) have fluted sides so they have more surface area to absorb heat (this seems like it's probably not going to contribute too much).


On January 11, 2008 at 06:17 PM, Christa (guest) said...
Subject: Dark Chocolate Souffle
Great consistant Recipe ! I have made this many times and always get great results .I love that you can make ahead .Always rises . Last week I added finely grated orange zest (actually added another facet to an already nice recipe )


On January 21, 2008 at 12:45 AM, ashwe7 (guest) said...
Subject: yummyyyyyy
:D This was absolutely wonderful!!! Very very yummy, thank you for the recipe and clear directions.


On January 27, 2008 at 06:01 PM, Sahr (guest) said...
Subject: LOVE THIS RECIPE!!!!
awesome recipe!! i'm a huge fan! i went and bought the ramekins especially for this recipe and yeah i even got an electronic weighing scale for my birthday after reading your article on diff kinds of weighing scales! :D


On February 04, 2008 at 05:53 AM, Sue (guest) said...
Subject: Altitude
I just tried this recipe on a whim in a city where the altitude is 5000 feet and it worked out great! I turned the oven to 350 though, to account for the difference in altitude.
We used Baker's bittersweet chocolate and found it extremely chocolatey - any suggestions for how to turn down the chocolate?


On February 20, 2008 at 02:27 PM, tanima.chax said...
Subject: Substitute
Is there any substitute for cream in the recipe?


On March 25, 2008 at 02:26 PM, JETinRI (guest) said...
Subject: Great Recipe
Thank you for posting this. I used 74% dark chocolate. It was my first attempt at making any type of souffle and it came out great.


On April 04, 2008 at 03:49 PM, Jim Duffy (guest) said...
Subject: Ingredients question
What is the ingredient shown on the plate with the dark chocolate in the very first picture showing all of the ingredients? It looks like cream cheese, but the recipe doesn't call for any...Is it the butter?


On April 04, 2008 at 06:49 PM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: Ingredients question
Jim Duffy wrote:
What is the ingredient shown on the plate with the dark chocolate in the very first picture showing all of the ingredients? It looks like cream cheese, but the recipe doesn't call for any...Is it the butter?

It is the butter.


On April 09, 2008 at 06:47 PM, DanMM (guest) said...
Subject: chocolate souffle
Great recipe i made two small ramekins using dark chocolate (70%) from WalMart. I used the whole chocolate bar (3.5 oz) and it worked perfectly. The chocolate is made in Germany and tastes surprisingly good. I also used the three egg whites and the height was impressive and the souffle delicious. For those of you who want to substitute cream of tartar: just use equal amount of vinegar. I've sustituted this many times and even did it with these souffles and it works perfectly.


On May 31, 2008 at 01:48 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: What a great recipe!
This was my first attempt, and the instructions with pictures are incredibly reassuring. I had to make a few substitutions (or a trip to the store). I used milk chocolate and half and half instead of cream. They looked a little undercooked at 15 minutes, so I added 2, and they turned out well. My kids were asking for more and my husband said it was the best dessert he'd ever had. Thanks!


On June 09, 2008 at 09:57 AM, prac (guest) said...
Subject: Drying Effect
I made this recipe with 62% cacao chocolate. It was delicious and moist, but despite the moistness it had a drying effect on my tongue. Any idea what caused that? I would rather not have that effect if I can help it.


On June 09, 2008 at 05:29 PM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: Drying Effect
prac wrote:
I made this recipe with 62% cacao chocolate. It was delicious and moist, but despite the moistness it had a drying effect on my tongue. Any idea what caused that? I would rather not have that effect if I can help it.

Could be your brand of chocolate. What brand is it and how does it taste when you eat it out of hand?


On June 09, 2008 at 08:46 PM, prac (guest) said...
Subject: Re: Drying Effect
It's Nestle brand. I don't notice any drying effect from just eating the chocolate itself.


On June 10, 2008 at 05:35 AM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: Drying Effect
prac wrote:
It's Nestle brand. I don't notice any drying effect from just eating the chocolate itself.

Can you list the ingredients of the chocolate? If I don't see anything odd there (should be just cocoa/cacao solids and butter, lecithin, and sugar) then I'll have to ponder this a bit more.


On June 30, 2008 at 02:14 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: And add blueberries
try adding 1/2c blueberries... perrrfect!


On July 15, 2008 at 04:02 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: microwave
can you cook souffle in a microwave?


On July 15, 2008 at 05:03 PM, Dilbert said...
.........can you cook souffle in a microwave?

this I once tried.

would have made a wonderful grade school volcano science project, but as to serving the resulting mess,,,, well - we called it scrambled eggs . . . . not recommended.


On July 19, 2008 at 11:30 PM, an anonymous reader said...
This recipe is very easy to understand, I appreciate what you have done. I'm excited to make this; souffles aren't scary, if it doesn't come out right try again! ;)


On August 11, 2008 at 03:29 AM, ace (guest) said...
Subject: dark chocolate souffle
fantastic! i love your step by step directions with pictures! please do more recipes! your shrimp scampi recipe is also outstanding!


On August 12, 2008 at 12:12 PM, Jeff (guest) said...
Subject: How can there be any remaining?
This sounds delicious, but why are there two steps for folding the egg whites? Where you wrote:

"Adding the whites a little at a time, fold them into the chocolate mixture."

and

"Without over mixing, fold the remaining egg whites into the batter."

How can there be any egg whites "remaining" if I do the first folding step?


On August 12, 2008 at 10:37 PM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: How can there be any remaining?
Jeff wrote:
This sounds delicious, but why are there two steps for folding the egg whites? Where you wrote:

"Adding the whites a little at a time, fold them into the chocolate mixture."

and

"Without over mixing, fold the remaining egg whites into the batter."

How can there be any egg whites "remaining" if I do the first folding step?

That's just a continuation of the previous step... two photos, so I broke it up into two descriptions.


On August 20, 2008 at 05:58 PM, Nobody special (guest) said...
Subject: Been looking for ages
Dude. I been looking everywhere for this recipe. Stopped after a while. kinda gave up. But decided to give it another go. I got a friend overseas that I have not met in person :) . Hope to make it for her for christmas this year. Thanks alot.


On October 08, 2008 at 07:25 AM, Streetcat (guest) said...
Subject: Sizing adjustments
The only ramekins i managed to get seem to hold about 120 ml. Should i just apply the same quantities and fill three instead of two, or are there any more adjustments i should make? {For instance, will it still bake right within the same time, even though the volume is smaller?}

Btw, thanks for the most comprehensive recipes site on the internet! :=D


On October 08, 2008 at 08:27 AM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: Sizing adjustments
Streetcat wrote:
The only ramekins i managed to get seem to hold about 120 ml. Should i just apply the same quantities and fill three instead of two, or are there any more adjustments i should make? {For instance, will it still bake right within the same time, even though the volume is smaller?

You probably don't have to make any adjustments to the ingredients, but you might need to shorten the baking time. It also depends on the shape of the ramekins - a smaller diameter (higher sides) works better than a larger diameter (low sides - like the ones used for creme brulees). The time needed will more or less be a guess at this point, so I'm going to hazard 12-13 minutes?


On October 08, 2008 at 06:36 PM, Streetcat (guest) said...
Subject: my ramekins suck :={
Thanks for the quick response!

I suspected that, about the taller ramekins being better, and now you confirm. I measured mine: they are 4 cm high, and expanding {that's bad too, right?}, so diameter is 8.5 cm on top and 5.5 cm at the bottom.
They're also made of fail... i mean foil, instead of ceramic.

I actually found a place that sells the good kind {ceramic, streight sides, like on the photo}, but only after i got the mpression they can't be found and bought the alumnium foil ones. So i wanna try making it in those, and if it fails, i'll get the good ones. :=}


On November 01, 2008 at 05:38 AM, Wolvie (guest) said...
I tried to make it today but it didnt rise that much.. I used 35% whip cream, is that too heavy? also I didnt get the part where I got the egg whites to soft peak, how can i keep beating when its already in the mixture to reach stiff peaks? thanks!


On November 01, 2008 at 06:00 AM, Michael Chu said...
Wolvie wrote:
also I didnt get the part where I got the egg whites to soft peak, how can i keep beating when its already in the mixture to reach stiff peaks? thanks!

You should beat the egg whites to stiff peaks once you incorporate the sugar and cream of tartar - before you mix it into the chocolate.


On November 04, 2008 at 02:18 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: reheating souffle
if i have baked these souffles correctly in the first place can i turn them out of the moulds and reheat in the microwave or oven and still get them to rise a little. if so for how long do i rehaet them.
in essence i am asking can you bake them again before serving and if not this recipe do you have another recipe for a twice baked souffle?


On November 25, 2008 at 07:32 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: re large chocolate souffle (no ramekins involved!)
On November 08, 2007 at 10:44 PM

I posted a question about making a huge large choco souffle!!

Results - a bit late - but better now than never!!

IT WORKED

I had two gorgeous HUGE chocolate souffles, that were really outta-this-world.

Thanks!
Anne


On December 29, 2008 at 09:30 PM, an anonymous reader said...
This was fantastico!! Thanks for posting this recipe...even so long ago and people love it- it was easy to follow...the pictures were most helpful as I was worried if I was doing everything correctly, since it is not the easiest thing to make. I can't believe I made Chocolate Souffle :) It was delish and I watched it rise- so awesome...thanks again!!


On January 21, 2009 at 09:10 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: souffle's
what do i need to do to bake this at 7200 feet in a gas oven? The oven is a Wolf for residential.


On January 30, 2009 at 03:59 PM, anatale101@verizon.net (guest) said...
Subject: Souffle
Wondering if 8 oz coofee cups would wok.I think it would make a nice presentation,they are brown, and I also would be able to use the matching saucers.I am having a dinner party next week and cant wait to try.I love thet fact that you stated that it could be made hours before
Thanks


On March 13, 2009 at 04:57 PM, pc (guest) said...
Subject: souffle
The process here is off, hence the souffle rose very little as it should have about three times the height. It looks to dense also, more like a brownie.
Do not use Pam like someone before had mentioned, do you really want chocolate and eggs, which are in the scheme of things delicate flavors, to have that artificial flavors. Just make sure your butter layer is thin and up to the rim, dust with sugar.
Also, melt your chocolate first, remove from heat and quickly add butter stirriing to incorporate thoroughly. Then stir in the cream, warm the cream slightly first. This way your chocolate will not sieze as it has done in the picture. Souffles also benefit from a smidge of alcohol, giving the souffle more of a lift. Add an extra egg white when whipping the meringue. This should give your souffle a lighter texture and higher rise.


On March 23, 2009 at 04:08 AM, Tina (guest) said...
Subject: Dark Chocolate Souffle, Yummy!!
:D Thank you so much for this recipe. I was a 'souffle virgin' but had just the right amount of ingredients and it came out soo heavenly!! 8| I was soo amazed!! I watched as it rose in the oven, and it was soo fun to make it too. Thank you again :)


On April 10, 2009 at 12:19 PM, Majesty said...
Subject: No heavy cream
In Holland (where I live) they don't sell heavy cream (well, maybe the occasional British shop in the occasional big city). Can I also use normal 'whipping' cream, which contains 30% fat?
Is there a variation possible with 100 grams grained almonds? Of course I could just try it out, but I'm prepairing for the Easter meal and rather don't fail with an experiment that doesn't turn out to be good.
Thanks beforehand.


On April 10, 2009 at 08:25 PM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: No heavy cream
Majesty wrote:
In Holland (where I live) they don't sell heavy cream (well, maybe the occasional British shop in the occasional big city). Can I also use normal 'whipping' cream, which contains 30% fat?

As long as you can whip the cream up, you can use it.


On April 10, 2009 at 10:32 PM, Majesty said...
Subject: Re: re: no heavy cream
Thanks for your quick reply. I didn't know that heavy cream, which has much more fat, could so easily be replaced with the other cream.
Just want to ask my other question again. I grained some almonds yesterday, thinking I was going to use them for another recipe, but in the end I decided I wanted to try the recipe from this site. I'm just wondering if anyone knows what the effect will be of adding 100 grams of grained almonds. They are pretty well grained, although I wouldn't call it 'super fine'. It's not like flour. The almonds seem pretty fat, I read. 54 grams per 100 grams is fat.
Does that mean that I have to add less butter for instance?
I can imagine that the contents would become too heavy to rise up (to the occasion) and become a soufflé. But I'm happy with a chocolatepuddingy thing as well, as long as it's tasty.
Anyone willing to speculate if it will work? Monday morning (Sunday night for you) I'm going to make them.
Happy Easter!


On April 27, 2009 at 09:35 PM, Socalone (guest) said...
Subject: Thanks for this :)
I just made these! They came out great :D

I literally have 10 ramekins left over from the Trader Joes 2pk frozen chocolate souffle. My goal was to stop buying from TJs and make my own.
Well, this recipe is perfect. This recipe will fill 4 TJ souffle cups.

Such a simple yet tasty recipe! And I'm saving money. Thanks so much.


On May 10, 2009 at 06:18 PM, an anonymous reader said...
This is a good recipe. The best sauce I have had with a soufle is Creme Angalise. It is a great balance to the deep choc taste and is served cold which balances the hot of the soufle.


On August 03, 2009 at 08:00 AM, Djsivy (guest) said...
Subject: Made recipe with 2-quart ramekin
I multiplied the recipe by 3, poured the entire batter into a 2-quart ramekin (buttered and sugared as per the recipe), and cooked it at 375 for just under 40 minutes. The crust came out perfectly (imho), and the center was custardy. I made some blueberry frozen yogurt to go with it, and spooned it out to a crowd of 8 people (after the initial dramatic presentation of a beautifully risen souffle, of course). Very good recipe - thank you!


On August 16, 2009 at 04:06 PM, Porcellana (guest) said...
Subject: I loved it!
The soufflés turned out great! I am very grateful for this easy to follow break-down of the recipe. Thank you, Michael. I posted a longer note on my experience with the soufflé and added some pictures of the results here:
http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=115198632973&ref=mf
All the best, Yordanka


On August 16, 2009 at 06:22 PM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: I loved it!
Porcellana wrote:
The soufflés turned out great! I am very grateful for this easy to follow break-down of the recipe. Thank you, Michael. I posted a longer note on my experience with the soufflé and added some pictures of the results here:
http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=115198632973&ref=mf
All the best, Yordanka

Hi Yordanka,
Posting links to Facebook doesn't work for most people unless you change the permissions on your content to viewable by "Everyone".


On August 20, 2009 at 09:19 AM, Porcellana (guest) said...
Subject: Facebook
Really strange, because I did change it! We check again. Thanks for the note.


On August 20, 2009 at 09:49 AM, Porcellan (guest) said...
Subject: Re: I loved it!
Hi Michael, since FB doesn't seem to work I posted my note her http://yordankaevgenieva.blogspot.com/

Thanks again,
Yordanka


On September 21, 2009 at 03:44 AM, beginer-home-chef (guest) said...
Subject: OHHHH!
Oh! My gosh, I'm a beginer on cook and this chocolate suffle didn't let me down. My husband is always my taste texter and he just loved he said that was the best thing that he ever eaten. Thank you so much. All the step by step and the pictures helped me sooo much.


On November 06, 2009 at 04:50 AM, Karen (guest) said...
Subject: Prepping the Mold
I interned in a kitchen, and actually, prepping the mold with butter and sugar DOES help with rising of the souffle. When you prep appropriately (butter, sugar, and freeze molds if you can), the souffle will rise nicely without cracking. When you don't prep, it will still rise, but not as dramatically. Will still taste great too, so prep mold if you want to have a dramatic souffle!

By the way, I love this website, keep it up!!!


On November 07, 2009 at 11:40 PM, Burgess Shale (guest) said...
Subject: Falling Souffle
Love the site.

About comments near the beginning: I've been thinking about souffles, and as near as I can figure, the real problem is that a souffle is puffed up by hot air and water vapor. It's only a matter of time before the air contracts and the vapor condenses, causing the souffle to deflate.

In bread, this doesn't seem to be as much of a problem; I'm guessing it's because (a) breads use leavening agents, like yeast or baking powder, and (b) the gluten web is really sturdy. Yeast breads are permitted to rise for a while, as well.

With this in mind, I tried to make a German/ Baby Dutch pancake (which is souffle-like) with some baking powder. Although I used a small amount and mixed it in thoroughly, it affected the taste, and the thing really didn't puff up that well.

Thinking about the problem, I can think of possible solutions:

1) Add an ingredient that will evaporate, sublime, or deliquesce, thus expanding and leaving a gas pocket. Powdered dry ice might achieve this, but is likely to significantly foul up cooking. Baking powder is supposed to deliquesce, but it leaves nasty-tasting salts behind. Ammonium acetate? Prob. not... Note that English steamed puddings use a similar strategy: small bits of tallow melt as the pudding sets, leaving voids behind.

2)Keep it really hot, which may hinder eating, or

3) quickly replace the hot air and water with something that will not collapse. This last bit would make the souffle into a sort of aerogel. This could perhaps be achieved by flushing the souffle with supercritical acetone and/or carbon dioxide at temperatures high enough to avoid collapse. Using supercritical water would be inadvisable, as it is a strong oxidant and would make fats in the souffle go rancid. (Of course, the other solvents have their own problems with edibility and taste!)

-BS


On December 06, 2009 at 04:59 PM, an anonymous reader said...
I looked at so many chocolate souffle recipes, not sure if I could make it for the meal I was planning. Was there a way to make them ahead of time, or at least do most of the work ahead of time? Everything said serve immediately, but I couldn't serve dessert first or leave in the middle of dinner to go make some souffles either. Thank you for being so clear!


On January 02, 2010 at 06:07 PM, Nisha (guest) said...
Wow, thanks a lot! I'm not an engineer - far from it, I'm a language teacher! - but I think this site is brilliant! Going to try out your recipes ASAP :)


On February 06, 2010 at 03:29 PM, quarkz said...
Hi,

How should i adjust the oven time or temperature if I'm going to just make 1 serving? As for the ingredients, do I just divide by 2?

Thanks alot!


On February 06, 2010 at 08:31 PM, Dilbert said...
the recipe makes two ramekins - so you should not need to adjust either time or temp in baking.

for a smaller batch, just half everything - I suspect one yolk, two whites - that might produce a little extra.


On February 10, 2010 at 12:37 PM, quarkz said...
Hi I just tried yesterday. Unfortunately, it was a failure. The top was burnt and it didn't raise evenly, instead it is like a mountain. So any idea what happened?

I guess maybe it has to do with uneven mixing of the chocolate mixture and the egg white. My temperature was 190deg c and I wonder if it is too high.

Thanks!


On February 10, 2010 at 02:17 PM, Dilbert said...
the 190'C temp is right - so burnt on the top could be

- the actual oven temp is hotter than 190'C as set by the control
- baked too close to the top - use middle or lower shelf
- a natural consequence of the volcano effect.

the volcano effect often comes if it bakes too fast - the outside sets up before the center has expanded and as the center continues to bake it "erupts"

use a separate thermometer to check the oven temp - that's the easy part.

the ramekin / baking container can also play a role - to thin / too heat conductive and the outsides bakes quicker.

you can also use a water bath / "bain marie" to help with that problem.

un-even mixing might have contributed - the chocolate portion will be denser than just egg white - which might show up as small portions of the non-chocolate mix separating.


On February 10, 2010 at 04:41 PM, quarkz said...
Well, tried it again and this time, I beat much longer till stiff peak and mix more evenly.

Within 5 mins inside the oven, it has raised by 2-3cm! But it keeps on rising and gets a bit "unstable". The souffle rises until it is very near the oven and gets burnt.

Guess it's because I half the ingredient and it's 1 yolk to 2 egg white. Is there too much egg white? I still have the mixture left. Will it work if I now use a lower temp (150 instead 190deg C) and maybe longer time?

Thanks!


On February 10, 2010 at 06:11 PM, Michael Chu said...
quarkz wrote:
Guess it's because I half the ingredient and it's 1 yolk to 2 egg white. Is there too much egg white?

The recipe will still work with 1 yolk to 2 whites, but there will be more lift. Just put less in each ramekin.


On February 10, 2010 at 06:35 PM, Dilbert said...
>> The souffle rises until it is very near the oven and gets burnt.

what kind of oven are you using? a "standard" 60-75 cm wide floor oven or a counter top type toaster oven?


On February 11, 2010 at 08:30 AM, quarkz said...
I'm not too sure what you mean, but mine is a small oven about 50cm wide with the heating element at the top and bottom. I think it raises too much and hence it get too close to the heating element.


On February 11, 2010 at 01:47 PM, Dilbert said...
>>what you mean
it is physically a small dish - so if it is getting "close" to an element I suspect you are using something like:

http://www.amazon.com/Ovens-Toasters-Small-Appliances/b?ie=UTF8&node=289933

vs something like this:

http://www.us-appliance.com/gegasfrestan.html

using a small counter top oven will present some challenges for dishes like souffle. it's a small volume, many watts, heats very fast and often overshoots the set temperature.

your intuition to modify the baking temperature is probably a good start - it will require some experimenting.


On February 13, 2010 at 08:10 PM, Joe (guest) said...
Subject: Can you refrigerate the batter or will it become dense?
Was wondering if I were to refrigerate the completed batter and then bake them tomorrow if the would end up very dense or if they would back like normal...


thanks,

Joe


On February 13, 2010 at 08:23 PM, Dilbert said...
>>refrigerater batter for later

very unlike to be satisfactory - a souffle is beaten egg whites - they need to be baked right away.


On February 15, 2010 at 05:51 AM, Foodie99 (guest) said...
Subject: Yum!
Just made this soufleé. It was delicious! I made some homemade raspberry sauce to put on top and it came out very well. I also used three egg whites instead of two. Fantastic!


On February 24, 2010 at 10:17 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Answer to: Can you refrigerate the batter or will it become
Michael wrote in his recipe:

"The best part of making soufflés is that they can be prepared to this point beforehand and refrigerated for up to three days. On the day you plan to serve the soufflés, take them out of the refrigerator about two hours before you plan to serve them so they can warm up a little. If you don't take them out of the fridge early, then bake them for an extra minute or two."

The above statement was right after pouring the batter into the ramekins.


On June 02, 2010 at 11:22 AM, CookEngineer (guest) said...
Subject: No granulated sugar to the ramekins.Concern about bake time.
Well, I tried putting granulated sugar to the sides of the ramekins, but after baking it becomes half burnt - half melted (tastes bad), especially the sugar that gets up sticking to the souffle side.

I changed it to a little flour (or only butter) and the result was both tasty and practical (it could still rise).

Secondly I have asked an expert, and told me that the perfect souffle should be just baked on the outside (1cm), leaving the inside in liquid form. I personally cant make both the souffle to rise to 1.5x - 2x its height and both have it liquid inside, as baking it for more will turn most of it solid.

At least the taste -even when not fully risen- is excellent.


On August 03, 2010 at 03:12 PM, Willaliburd (guest) said...
Subject: Dark chocolate souffle
I've made this recipe several times and its fantastic. Have a public holiday today so gonna make some more.

Thanks for a great recipe!


On August 28, 2010 at 09:09 PM, jangofett (guest) said...
Subject: Re: Gas Oven Problem
I've been cooking for a while now, I dont believe that having a gas oven will affect it. I have a gas oven and I used it to make this recipe, so in this case it works perfectly fine for me. Hope I helped.

-Jango- ;)


On December 01, 2010 at 04:34 PM, Fracesca (guest) said...
Subject: no ramekin
i need to make this tomorrow but i don't have any ramekins....would it be fine to use a big container for the whole thing then just slice after?


On January 17, 2011 at 05:08 AM, Debbie (guest) said...
Subject: Won't the bubbles go away?
I was just wondering, I want to try this recipe out for an event but I would be busy on the day itself. You have said that it can be made before hand and kept in the fridge. But won't the air bubbles go away after keeping it that long in the fridge? I tried a different chocolate souffle recipe before and i had just beat it and kept it on the counter for a few minutes. When I came back the bubbles had risen to the top and there was a liquid at the bottom spoiling the whole thing and no matter how much I beat it again, it never became fluffy like it should. So I'm wondering, how can you keep it that long without spoiling the essence of the souffle?


On January 17, 2011 at 07:47 PM, Chef George (guest) said...
Subject: Chocolate souffle
Wow - so many interesting questions & problems, and the thread lives on after 4 years!

Debbie - about bubbles rising and liquid falling to the bottom - that can occur with plain egg whites, as the albumin slides off the bubbles and accumulates beneath. It's easy to whip the liquid back in, but not after you've folded the chocolate mixture. At that point, any more whipping will deflate the entire mass, as fat (in chocolate) inhibits bubble/foam formation. I'm guessing that your whites were not adequately beaten to stiff peaks before you added the chocolate; if they were, it should hold for hours, as he said.

It is possible to beat the whites too much, as which point they become "dry" - they're so stiff that it's hard to fold the chocolate in. So don't overdo it.

Fracesca - you can't really slice a large souffle; just scoop out large individual servings with large spoons. And that's suboptimal, as upon exposure to the cool air and probably cold serving plates, the souffle servings will deflate rapidly. It's so much more impressive, tho not always possible, to use smaller individual ramekins for each person.

As for gas vs. electric ovens, the heat retention in both is such that any temperature swings will be insignificant. Almost every restaurant oven is gas.

As mentioned, thin foil ramekins conduct heat so rapidly that the sides will cook/burn before the inside is hot enough to rise. Some users seem to have had success with them, but I'd be careful.

Whether you prefer these cooked through or still custardy in the center is your choice.

Souffles do rise by being pushed up by the expanding hot bubbles; they don't climb. Bread dough rises in a bowl lined w/ oil; it's not climbing, either.

Cream of tartar is available in any grocery spice section. Its purpose is to acidify the whites just a bit, which lends a bit of strength to their foam. You can also do this w/ a few drops of lime/lemon juice, and some say that copper mixing bowls do this by forming a little cupric acid. Nothing magic, and you can do just about as well without any of this, just good strong beating. And room-temp whites whip up faster than cold ones. So do fresher ones.

Many souffle recipes begin with a flour- or corn starch base, into which you add flavors - chocolate, orange, vanilla, whatever. Here, the cream and butter "stand in" as the base. You don't whip the cream, so exactly what percentage fat it is isn't important at all - regular table cream, whipping, high-fat whipping, etc. Similarly, the butter isn't critical - salted or not, French or American, etc.

You can play around with most aspects of this, or any recipe. Probably the critical aspects are whipping the eggs whites to stiff peaks, folding the chocolate in gently, so as not to deflate the delicate foam, and having the oven hot enough to heat the mixture pretty quickly without burning the top and sides. Otherwise, % chocolate, milk vs. dark, etc are pretty open to variation.

Good luck!


On March 07, 2011 at 07:40 AM, Calvinator (guest) said...
Subject: Preparing the ramekins
Mix a little cocoa powder with the sugar for an interesting touch.


On February 17, 2012 at 04:53 AM, Pastry Diva (guest) said...
Subject: TOO MUCH Chocolate??

I am just flabbergasted by all the people who want "LESS" chocolate!!

The recipe flat out tells you that this is a VERY intensely chocolate souffle. If you are looking for something LESS chocolatey, maybe this just isn't the recipe for you? :huh: Or maybe you should look for a vanilla souffle??

Sheesh! 8|


On February 17, 2012 at 02:42 PM, Jim Cooley said...
It was years before I got around to using cream of tartar in beaten egg whites, but it really does make a difference.


On February 28, 2012 at 11:23 AM, Chez Sunfleur (guest) said...
Subject: Delicious...Absolutely Delicious
Made these tonight for a dinner party with a raspberry sauce and whipped cream. They were wonderful. I was going to do the extra egg white thing and totally forgot and added the extra yolk as well. I was nervous I ruined the batter, but wasn't going to turn back. They turned out wonderful. I added a [u:89b7dadfe6]drop[/u:89b7dadfe6] of lemon juice and made sure the sides were super coated. I only coated in butter and they didn't stick a bit. As a matter of fact, when they began to deflate, they shrunk in from the sides of the ramekins. No sign of a sticking issue anywhere. I wanted to STRESS that you CAN make up ahead of time and they will be FINE. Because you stated you could do so, I made them 4 hours in advance and set them aside on the counter. When we all finished eating, I put them in the oven for 17 mins. They rose beautifully. Thank you for a wonderful recipe!!


On September 04, 2012 at 04:56 PM, Briel Cavil (guest) said...
Subject: Excellent recipe, and one question.
I made this last night for the first time ever, after watching Master Chef and watching them literally sweat over souffles. Your directions and photos made it crystal clear! It was fun to make, and even more fun to eat!
Is it possible to make it without the yolks? Or should I find a different dessert if I'm trying to cut a little fat and cholesterol?


On September 05, 2012 at 03:53 PM, Dilbert said...
yes, you can likely leave out the yolks with no effect.

adding the yolks back is common in most souffles for a bit of added richness to the taste.

given the cream and chocolate and butter,,,, I suspect you won't miss them.


On March 06, 2013 at 05:08 PM, Penny (guest) said...
Subject: This amazing chocolate souffle
I found this recipe about three years ago and it's the jewel in my dessert repertoire. I felt I must, although overdue, write and thank you for this, it has NEVER failed. I usually double the recipe and use smaller ramekins and store them in the freezer so I always have a spectacular dessert ready. I take them out of the freezer about an hour before they need to be cooked, and my fan electric oven does the job perfectly. Recently, I started serving them with a spoonful of Nigella's Seville Orange ice cream and the contrast is superb, but plain or served with anything else, they are a winner. Thank you!


On June 17, 2013 at 01:34 PM, global foodie (guest) said...
Subject: Silicone floral large muffin molds with bain marie okay?
Thank you for the great recipe and to all who have posted comments and suggestions! I really appreciate all the technical advice!

These days, I almost exclusively bake in silicone. I read above that silicone is not recommended due to the way it cooks the souffle. However, I wondered whether a bain marie would correct any problems caused by the silicone?

Of course, after baking, I would unmold the souffles so that the floral bottoms show on top. I was thinking that if the souffles suffered in the inversion, then I would re-heat a bit to fluff them a bit. Do you think that this sounds good, or do you think that the maybe warmer service offered by the heat-retaining ramekins trumps my molds' decorative looks?

Thank you for any advice you can give me!


On June 17, 2013 at 03:12 PM, Dilbert said...
actually - tho I've never tried it - I think the bain marie would make things worse.

souffles are pretty soft / spongy to begin with - "over baking" them can add a bit more firmness - but it's a multiple edge sword - too long a bake and the souffle gets rather dry and grainy.

the trick I've found to create a free standing unmolded souffle - only done with sweet / aka dessert souffle - is an outer and somewhat harder/firmer 'crust' - which I accomplish by preheating the (ceramic) baking dish - which becomes an exercise in oven mitts and not burning your fingers. . . .

I put the buttered/floured ramekins on a baking dish or baking stone, pre-heat to about 300'F (too high & you burn the flour....) then slide out the oven rack and fill with the souffle mix.... something is needed to catch the drips/spills - it happens....

the water bath of course prevents the baking container from "over heating" - hence no / less 'crusty' formation. which is the 'complaint' on the silicone molds - they do not transfer the heat so readily as to crust up the outer surfaces.


On June 17, 2013 at 03:29 PM, Jim Cooley said...
Dilbert wrote:

the trick I've found to create a free standing unmolded souffle - only done with sweet / aka dessert souffle - is an outer and somewhat harder/firmer 'crust' - which I accomplish by preheating the (ceramic) baking dish - which becomes an exercise in oven mitts and not burning your fingers. . . ..


Ohhh! I like that idea. Will give it a try some time.


On June 17, 2013 at 10:41 PM, global foodie (guest) said...
Subject: can this souffle be used for free form souffle pancakes?
Thanks so much Dilbert! For some reason, I thought that the posted objection to the silicone was that it got too hot. My mistake! I completely understand that it would not get hot enough. I also have cast iron muffin molds, but it sounds like I should just go with ramekins.

The reason I started looking at this recipe was an interest in souffle pancakes, which I love. Here is a link for a photo. http://www.urbanspoon.com/rph/37/451863/1147352/hawaii-cream-pot-souffle-pancakes-with-bananas-house-made-salted-caramel-photo

Do you think that I could just prep a large baking dish, maybe pre-heat it as you suggested, then ladle the souffle mix onto the baking dish to treat it like a griddle. I don't really care about the circle shape, but I do want it to look appetizing.


On June 17, 2013 at 11:41 PM, Dilbert said...
I don't think you'll get the height doing it 'spooned' on to a griddle.

by total accident I 'discovered" a neat finger food - souffle mix, into a piping bag, big diameter serrated tip, pipe out "(cheese) straws / shapes" onto a hot stone.

it does puff up, but that dish looks to have 2-3inches of height - definite 'in the mold' technique from what I see.


On June 18, 2013 at 09:23 AM, global foodie (guest) said...
Subject: thank you Dilbert!
Thanks so much for lending your eye and expertise, Dilbert! You have saved me from a lot of experimentation and failure, no doubt!

BTW, the souffle pancakes are only about 1" high. Perhaps the photo in the link below shows them better. The photo you were initially looking at is showing them stacked sideways, almost standing on their sides, on top of each other. There are 3 pancakes, so one in the back is providing false height to the others showing in front.

http://www.urbanspoon.com/rph/37/451863/1534586/hawaii-cream-pot-cream-pot-photo

If you would be so kind to comment again, with the new info and height of 1 inch, re whether one could spoon them. Also, could you speculate whether the souffle pancakes could have been made with an egg ring type collar, which might have helped the height. They seem so circular in the photo.


On June 18, 2013 at 11:37 AM, Dilbert said...
they are nicely round - seems something was used to contain them - unlikely one could spoon it onto a griddle so "perfect"

an egg ring is a good starter - some experimenting needed (g)


On June 18, 2013 at 12:35 PM, global foodie (guest) said...
Subject: souffle pancake with egg ring
Thanks, Dilbert! I will test with an egg ring, and also go to the Williams Sonoma store to see what else is available. I will let you know.

Do you think that extra large eggs are a problem for this recipe? The extra egg white might be in between 2-3 egg whites of L size eggs if I use XL eggs, and maybe the yolk will not be substantially more. So maybe a fluffier batch but not enough to ruin texture?


On June 18, 2013 at 06:07 PM, Dilbert said...
>>XL eggs

didn't find an actual recipe - only the photos.

XL are about 12% heavier than Large. depending on how much quantity you're making, unlikely to be a major impact.


On June 19, 2013 at 01:42 PM, global foodie (guest) said...
Subject: using the chocolate souffle recipe above
Thank you, Dilbert! I will go ahead with the substitution of the XL eggs! In my location, the XLs are the sale egg size, so the ones we always get.

Yes, I only gave the link for the photos, which is all I have for now. Sorry. I am planning on trying the recipe given in this blog above, the chocolate souffle, for the pancake version and the ramekin version.

I might try it with all 3 versions, silicone, ramekin, and egg ring, with my first test of the chocolate souffle recipe, before my guests arrive. After your advice, I am going to just try my small silicone floral muffin mold (set of two 3-inch flowers) as a substitute for the egg ring, along with testing the egg ring and the ramekin. I will report back.

Do you have any thoughts on how a convection oven (counter top glass bowl with convection heating lid) would work with this souffle recipe? Thank you again!


On June 19, 2013 at 04:43 PM, Dilbert said...
I only have a wall oven, which does have a "convection" mode. no experience with the counter top type models.

rarely use the convection thing; way too old fashion.

in big broad brush strokes, "convection" circulates the (hot) air more forcefully. a souffle rises because the entrained air bubbles "expand" when heated.

increased hot air circulation could cause the souffle to "skin over" too quickly and perhaps inhibit the rise - but as I have no experience, can't offer any solid first hand advice as to counter tops.

>>egg rings
I have a batch of "old style" cat food cans - top & bottom cut out. newer styles don't have a bottom one can "remove" . . .

I use them primarily for English muffins - but the size / height might work with the pancake approach.

you could also try a higher ring cut from parchment baking paper - just staple it together . . . might not turn out perfectly round.


On June 21, 2013 at 07:43 PM, global foodie (guest) said...
Subject: thank you!
Yes, I can see what you mean regarding skinning over too early. Thank you for that insight!

The new convection ovens are being used as microwave substitutes. So, yes, old technology, but a new generation of users. I am making ouefs en cocotte (baked eggs on leftover veggies etc) with it regularly. Clear glass bowl lets me see easily, and stop the cooking as soon as the egg becomes opaque (which means soft set for the whites and very runny for the yolks, which is how I like my eggs).

Thank you for the parchment and cat food can thoughts. I probably have a tuna can, which would be similar.

I just got a tray of eggs (30), so am now ready to start experimenting with souffles. :D

Thank you for everything, Dilbert! Have a nice weekend!


On June 21, 2013 at 09:50 PM, Dilbert said...
good luck with the trials! keep us posted.
the souffle pancake pix look darn good!
don't forget to post your final recipe.

>>baking forms
there are the odd ball products still in the three pc can (top-bottom-body) but they are a semi-rare. hence my coveting of my 'old' collection.


On June 22, 2013 at 01:19 PM, global foodie (guest) said...
Subject: The strawberry souffle pancake inspired me
Dilbert, thank you for the good wishes! Glad that you liked the pix of the souffle pancakes!

The strawberry ones I ate were out of this World and were much prettier than the ones in the pix I found online. The made-from-scratch whipped cream (slightly sweetened) was divine, mounded on top. It had strands of perfect strawberry syrup zinged across the soft whipped cream, with more syrup and luscious sweet strawberries alongside the pancakes. I totally failed to take a photo before diving in and devouring them. At $15 or $16 for 3 little pancakes, scrumptious or not, I might not return to have them again.

None of the pancakes are flavored, like chocolate. Only the topping changes. But, I could totally see chocolate pancakes.

Yes, I will definitely post. But, it could be a week or two, depending on how trials go. :) :)

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