Monday, February 25, 2013

Chocolate Souffle

I tend to avoid certain recipes.  They are recipes that that require specialized equipment or recipes that need me to separate eggs.  I also am not fond of recipes that require me to dirty a lot of pots and bowls.

So why did I make this chocolate souffle?

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Because Hubert Keller did so on The Chew for his Las Vegas restaurant Fleur.  And Vegas has been on my mind lately.  A friend was there over the weekend and posted some really great pics of the wine angels at Aureole.    There seem to be some really fancy restaurants there from some very nice chefs.  When I visited Vegas 15 years ago, there were no really fancy restaurants that I knew of.  I only knew about some extensive buffets and the two dollar shrimp cocktails.  It seems like Vegas these days is a bit more fine dining and less all you can eat.  It may be time for Minjenah to visit Sin City to eat well and discover some things to do there.

And I really like Hubert Keller.  He was in the first challenge in the first season of Top Chef.  And he really intimidated all the cheftestants.  And there is nothing like an intimidating French chef.

A few notes:

1) I halved this recipe because I REALLY should not have eight chocolate souffles in my house at the same time.  I would inhale them before someone would restrain me.  If you have better self control, please make the eight.  But even halved, I ended up making five souffles.  If you would like the original recipe, here you are.

2)  I do not own ramekins.  I used coffee cups.  Specialization is for insects.

3) The freshness and quality of your ingredients makes a HUGE difference in this recipe.  Buy the best chocolate you can afford.  I ended up using Callebaut because that is what I had on hand.    Also, fresh eggs are important.


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Chocolate Souffle adapted by Hubert Keller


Ingredients:

For Souffle:
4 Tablespoons of butter
5 Tablespoons of all purpose flour
1 cup half and half
3 ounces semi sweet baking chocolate, chopped fine
1 ounce unsweetened baking chocolate, chopped fine
1/2 cup vanilla sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 tablespoon dark rum
1 fat pinch of salt
4 egg yolks

For the meringue
4 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar

Vanilla Ice Cream


Method:

In a small pot, make a roux with the flour and butter.  Cook for about three minutes.  Set it aside.

In a medium pot, heat the half and half until  little bubbles form on the sides.  Add the chocolates and whisk until the chocolate is melted. Add the sugar, vanilla and rum.  Whisk until the mixture is smooth.  Add the roux and stir until thickened.  Set it aside to cool.

Butter and sugar five oven safe coffee cups.

Preheat the oven to 375.

When the chocolate mixture is warm to the touch, add the egg yolks, one at a time.  The mixture will be glossy.

In a separate bowl,  add the egg whites and cream of tartar.  Using a hand mixer, whip until soft peaks form.

Fold in the egg whites into the chocolate mixture in three batches.  The first batch is to lighten the heavy chocolate stuff so the other two additions can be mixed in.

Pour the souffle into the coffee cups and bake for about 15 minutes.

Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.

When I made these, I thought my kids would not like them because they are very rich, not too sweet and have a bitter aftertaste.  Much too adult for a six year old.

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Quite clearly, I was wrong.

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