When it comes to soufflé, I had an irrational fear that it’s the hardest recipe on earth and is impossible to make. I feel like most people feel this way too about soufflé, so I decided to take it upon myself and finally attempt it and guess what, it’s actually so easy! Yes, there are a few key things you need to know and follow but it’s literally a simple mixture of flour, butter, milk and egg yolks cooked together with whipped egg whites and cheese folded in to make it light fluffy and rise to epic heights! It’s a classic French dish and the name soufflé means ‘to blow up’ or to puff up’, so think of it as a cheesy, cloudy dream of a dish that you most certainly need in your life right now.
Cooking Time- 1 hour
Skill Level- Easy AF
- 4 tablespoons of butter. 1 tablespoon to grease the ramekins and the rest for the soufflé.
- 3 tablespoons of plain flour
- 1 ½ cups of milk
- 6 egg yolks
- 8 egg whites
- 1 1/2 cups of your choice of cheese. I used a mixture of Comte, Grana Padano and Cheddar. 1 cup for the soufflé, a few tablespoons for dusting the ramekins and a few tablespoons to top the soufflé at the end.
- Pinch of nutmeg
Watch the process
- Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Celsius.
- Start by melting 1 tablespoon of butter in the microwave for 10 seconds and then butter your choice of ramekins with a pastry brush, brushing upwards towards the lip of the ramekin. This creates ‘a ladder’ for your soufflé to climb up. Then sprinkle some finely grated cheese (I used Grana Padano) into the ramekins and slowly shake and turn the ramekin to make sure the cheese is evenly coated. Tip out any excess.
- Melt the 3 tablespoons of butter in a sauce pan and stir in 3 tablespoons of flour with a spatula, cooking over medium heat until the butter and flour foam together for about 2 minutes without browning.
- Remove from the heat. When the mixture has come together and looks like a buttery dough, pour in 1 ½ cups of boiling milk at once and beat vigorously with a whisk until fully mixed.
- Now beat in 6 egg yolks, one at a time until well incorporated. It should now look creamy and glossy. Place to the side.
- Now it’s time to beat your egg whites. In a clean, dry mixing bowl, begin to beat 8 egg whites with a whisk or electric beater with a pinch of salt. After 1 minute, the egg whites will break up and begin to become foamy in consistency. After a few minutes, soft peaks will form and then after another a minute or so you should get stiff peaks. Stop when they are just about to become stiff as you don’t want to overbeat these. The egg whites should also have a glossy white sheen and stand up and hold their shape when you run a whisk through them.
- Now take a large spoonful of the egg whites and stir it into the cream mixture mixing until fully combined.
- Now add all of the cream mixture into the bowl of egg whites.
- Gently fold the egg whites into the cream mixture very softly without deflating the mixture. Be very careful to not over fold them.
- Pour the mixture into your ramekins filling them up to the top.
- Bake in the oven on the top rack at 190 degrees Celsius for 30 minutes and under no circumstances open up the oven door during that time.
- Quickly pull the tray of soufflés out of the oven and sprinkle a handful of cheese on top and place straight back into the oven for another 10 minutes or until golden.
- Serve hot and immediately as the soufflé will deflate after 10 minutes. Enjoy and go to cheesy heaven!
Can you use any cheese?
Make sure you use a good melting cheese. You don't have to use as many different cheeses as I do, but using different cheeses will add layers of cheese flavour. You'll use 1 cup for the soufflé, a few tablespoons for dusting the ramekins and a few tablespoons to top the soufflé at the end.
Do you have to serve it right away?
Yes! Serve hot and immediately! Within 5 minutes, the soufflés will deflate by 30%. If you want to make this for a dinner party, the mixture can stand at room temperature for 1-2hours, so make and pour the mixture into ramekins before your guests arrive and then place in the oven 40 minutes before you serve dinner.
What would you serve this with?
You could have this on it's own with a fresh salad, or as an entrée/side dish as part of a bigger spread with a roast or stew.