I have always wanted to bake a soufflé. I mean, talk about accomplishing a challenge. A soufflé always brings to mind a fancy dessert that is so tempermental, if you were not careful, it would deflate over a fly flapping. Well, when Valentine’s Day came around, I decided to try my hand at a chocolate soufflé. However, we did have a back-up dessert, if my soufflé flopped. Hey, those kids want sweets on Valentine’s and I better have it for them.
First, brush a large ramekin or soufflé dish with soft butter, then coat with sugar. Put the dish in the fridge until later.
Set an oven rack in lower third of the oven and preheat to 400 degrees F. In a glass bowl, add this chocolate and butter.
Bring a medium size saucepan, filled with about an inch of water, to a boil. Do not let the water touch the bottom of your glass bowl. Stir the chocolate and butter occasionally until both have melted.
Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. Set aside.
Combine the egg yolks and warm water in another glass bowl and beat until it is frothy.
Gradually add 2 tablespoons sugar, and continue to beat for about 5 minutes.
Very lightly fold the yolks into the chocolate mixture. Do not use this same bowl for the egg whites.
Next, remove the dish from the fridge. Put the egg whites and lemon juice. Beat on medium until frothy, gradually add the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar and increase speed to high. Beat until the whites hold a stiff but not dry peak.
Very quickly and carefully, fold about a third of the egg whites into the chocolate to lighten.
Then fold in remaining whites until thoroughly blended.
Gently ladle or spoon the souffle mixture into the prepared dish.
Immediately bake until the souffle rises and the top is touched with brown, about 35 to 40 minutes. Remove from oven, dust with confectioners' sugar and serve immediately.
- 7 ounces finely chopped bittersweet or semisweet chocolate
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus for preparing the molds
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3 large egg yolks
- 3 tablespoons warm water
- 1/2 cup sugar, plus 2 tablespoons
- 8 large egg whites, room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- Confectioners' sugar for garnish