The word “soufflé” conjures up panic in fear in some bakers, but after giving it a go, it really wasn’t that difficult (promise)! I’ve been watching “The Great British Baking Show” on Netflix. It is such a great show, and there are three seasons up if you are looking for a new show to binge watch. Anyway, the contestants made a soufflé in one of the episodes, and it inspired me to want to try it myself! I’ve never even eaten one, so all the more reason to try it. Here are the needed ingredients: eggs, sugar, cocoa powder (some recipes call for baker’s chocolate, I just had cocoa powder on hand), heavy cream, and a little bit of butter. You will also need bowls, parchment paper and twine or paper clips.
Before you do anything, preheat the oven to 400° and melt a tablespoon of butter. Brush your bowls (I did two big bowls, but you could also do four small bowls) in upward strokes covering the inside. Then coat with sugar, tapping out the excess. After your bowls are coated, surround the bowls with a parchment paper collar. I taped them in place, but you can also use baker’s twine, and then a paper clip will hold the top flaps together. The collar helps the soufflé rise upwards evenly.
There are two separate things you need to make which you will mix together at the end: the crème pâtissière (they call it ‘crème pat’ on the GBBS, and here in the states we would call it custard) and meringue. Start with the crème pat, because you need to allow for it to cool.
Put a pot of water on the stove, and warm it up so it’s bubbling, not boiling. Place your bowl on top of that, and mix together the sugar, cocoa powder and heavy cream. Mix until it is incorporated, and there is a shine to it. Remove from the heat, and mix in one egg yolk and a pinch of salt. Let cool.
Next up is the meringue. The most important piece of information I can give you is get your eggs to room temperature! This will make your meringue light and fluffy. Separate your egg whites, and start mixing them.
Use a stand mixer or hand mixer to do this, because it will take a little while. After the egg whites start to fluff up, gradually add in 1 tablespoon of sugar. They should be light as clouds. ☁️
Another important tip I picked up from the show is waiting until the two mixtures are the same temperature before mixing them. If the crème pat is too hot, it will start cooking the egg in the meringue. Fold in half of the meringue by hand, but be careful not to over mix it.
This is what it will look like once all of the meringue is mixed in. Try to mix in any big white pieces of meringue.
Fill your bowls with batter. Put the cookie sheet with your bowls into the oven and cook for around 20 minutes. Mine took about 22 minutes. You are looking for a firm top, and a puffed up rise.
Here they are right out of the oven. They rose a good couple of inches! Serve IMMEDIATELY! And I mean immediately.
I took off the parchment paper collars, dusted a little powder sugar on top and quickly grabbed my camera only to find that they had already fallen quite a bit! That’s ok. They still tasted lovely.
- 1/3 C cocoa powder
- 1/2 C heavy cream
- 1/3 C sugar + extra to prep bowls
- 1 egg yolk
- pinch of salt
- 4 egg whites
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Brush soufflé dishes with melted butter, and then sprinkle in sugar to coat the inside of the bowl. Tap out the excess sugar. Cut strips of parchment paper that are twice the height of the bowl to make a collar around each. Tie or tape together.
- In a heat-safe bowl, combine the cocoa powder, heavy cream and sugar. Set bowl over pot with simmering water (not boiling) and stir. Mixture should be smooth. Remove the bowl from the pot, and mix in the egg yolk and pinch of salt. Let cool to room temperature.
- Beat the egg whites with a mixer until soft peaks form. Gradually add 1 tablespoon of sugar until incorporated.
- Fold in half of the meringue into the cooled chocolate mixture with a spatula. Once mixed in, fold in the rest of the meringue.
- Divide the soufflé mixture into the prepared bowls, filling dishes completely. Place bowls on a cookie sheet and place in the oven. Bake for around 20 minutes, or until puffed up and tops feel firm.
- Serve IMMEDIATELY. They fall quickly!