The soufflé is an adaptable egg recipe that you can fill with any of your favourite ingredients. The word soufflé is French for “to blow up,” which is exactly what happens when air is whipped into the egg white, giving it the fluffy texture it’s known for. While they have a reputation for being difficult to make, soufflés are remarkably easy and sure to impress.
Things You'll Need
- Medium saucepan
- Large bowl
- Electric mixer
- 4-cup soufflé or casserole dish
- 4 eggs
- 2 egg whites
- 2 tbsp (30 mL) butter
- 2 tbsp (30 mL) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) salt
- Pinch pepper
- 3/4 cup (175 mL) milk (1%)
- 1/4 tsp (1.25 mL) cream of tartar
- Finely chopped filling ingredients, see variations (optional)
Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Melt butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Stir in the flour, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is smooth and bubbly. Stir in the milk gradually. Continue stirring until the mixture is smooth and has thickened.
Separate the 4 egg yolks, reserving 2 of the egg whites. Beat the yolks well and add 1/4 cup (60 mL) of warm sauce mixture to the egg yolks.
Combine this yolk mixture with the remaining sauce, blending thoroughly. If desired, add any filling ingredients, stirring them into the white sauce until blended (see variations). Set the sauce aside to cool slightly.
Beat the egg whites with cream of tartar in a large bowl, until stiff but not dry. Fold some of the egg whites into the sauce to make it lighter, then gently, but thoroughly, fold the sauce into the remaining egg whites.
Carefully pour into a 4-cup (1 L) lightly greased soufflé or casserole dish.
Bake until puffed and lightly browned, about 20 to 25 minutes, or until a knife inserted comes out clean. Serve immediately.
- Cheese Soufflé: Add 1 cup (250 mL) grated Swiss cheese and 2 tbsp (30 mL) chopped green onion.
- Crab Soufflé: Add 1 can (6 oz/170 g) crab meat, 1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) dried thyme, 1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) curry powder and 1/4 tsp (1.25 mL) garlic salt.
- Leek and Parmesan Soufflé: Add 1 1/2 cups (375 mL) chopped leeks and 1/2 cup (125 mL) grated Parmesan cheese.
- Never add egg yolks to the hot sauce all at once as they may coagulate too rapidly and form lumps.
- Coating your greased dish with a sprinkling of breadcrumbs before adding the mixture, helps the soufflé to “climb” and puff up in the oven.
- Contrary to popular belief, it is normal for a soufflé to collapse a little after it’s removed from the oven.