Anyone who can make a soufflé is an accomplished home cook.
Understanding the basic underlying scientific principles that make a souffle what it is, can help your attempt of making one go off without a hitch.
It starts with knowing that it’s all in the eggs and 3 secrets.
First Secret Of Making A Soufflé
You have to separate the egg yolks from the whites. This is done so you can beat or whip the whites into a thick foam or airy stiff peaks as some recipes describe it when whipping egg whites.
Take extra care when separating out the whites to be sure that there are no yellow bits floating around in them.
The egg whites contain protein and if there is any presence of fat (yoke) in them, this will cause the bubbles to collapse and the egg whites will lose all their structure.
Second Secret To Making An Egg Soufflé
The second secret to a perfect souffle is not to overmix the whites into the souffle base.
Gently fold just long enough until all white streaks disappear.
When you bake the mixture, the air in the bubbles will expand, causing the souffle to rise.
In addition, the protein and any fat that was in the base will harden to provide support to the overall structure.
The Third Secret
DO NOT OPEN the oven door any time after you have placed the soufflé in the oven to cook.
Doing so will lower the temperature in the oven and allow cooler air in, causing the soufflé to fall or collapse.
The Soufflé your making is not only for eating – but is for SHOW as well – but only if you follow the 3 easy secrets to making the perfect soufflé.
Soufflé With Chicken & Vegetables
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus softened butter for brushing
1/4 cup grated white cheddar or smoked Gouda
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups milk
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup frozen peas and carrots
1 cup chicken breast, cut into small cubes
6 large eggs, separated
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
Preheat the oven to 400° and brush seven 1-cup ramekins with butter.
In a medium saucepan, melt the 4 tablespoons of butter. Whisk in the flour and cook over moderate heat for 1 minute.
Next whisk in the milk and cook over moderately low heat until smooth and very thick, about 2 minutes. Stir in the salt.
Off the heat, whisk in the egg yolks. Let cool slightly.
Transfer to a large bowl and stir in cheese, chicken and vegetables. Set aside.
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar at medium-high speed until frothy.
Increase the speed to high and beat until firm peaks form. With a rubber spatula, fold the egg whites into the soufflé base until no streaks of white remain.
Spoon the soufflé mixture into the ramekins, filling them to 1/2-inch below the rim.
Place ramekins onto a baking sheet and put into bottom third of the oven and bake until the soufflés are puffed and golden brown, about 20 minutes.
Alternatively, bake in a 7-cup soufflé at 375° for 40 minutes.