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A nerd in the Great Northwest, she is married to Snack, creator of The Dungeon Runner.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

In Which Melisan Blows up Eggs



So.

You thought I was going to blow up eggs, huh?
Run, my little pretties, as fast as you can...

Well…………

I AM.  Just not in the way you probably were thinking.

I, Melisan, am going to teach you the art of making a Hot Chocolate Soufflé.   

A soufflé is an egg mixture that is usually combined with sweets or cheese in order to make a puffy and delicate treat. Soufflés are considered an art form (but really, cooking is an easy art form. you can make the most wonderful palette from very simple ingredients, but I digress...) If you can make a soufflé that doesn't fall, you're considered an expert chef.  My soufflés rarely fall now, but they did the first time I made them, and I'll tell you some of the secret tricks I used to help keep them up in the recipe.  The word “soufflé” comes from a French word that loosely means “puffed up,” which these delicious treats are when done right,  but taken literally the word means to “blow up.”

I, personally, like the second meaning I mentioned.

This post was inspired by a blog contest that Vidyala, the creator of Manalicious did recently. Her blog is here. I wasn't able to enter by the deadline, but I still wanted to post the recipe.

So! Here we go!


Ingredients and Utensils

Ingredients

I test the bag first by eating a few morsels to...uh...check if the bag is still good! Yeah...
½ of an 11.5 oz bag of chocolate chips (I use milk chocolate, and only pour out the chips above the “milk chocolate morsels” text)

1 cup milk

¼ cup + 2 Tablespoons (TBS) butter

¼ cup all-purpose flour

4 Eggs, separated into whites and yokes (put them in different bowls, and make sure that the egg whites DO NOT have any egg yoke in them, otherwise the whites will not beat.)

3 TBS +1 ½ TBS sugar

1 TBS cocoa

Utensils

Medium Saucepan

Spatulas (plastic)

Wooden spoon

6 Ramekins (4x2 in)

Hand mixer or KitchenAid (use a beater and not the wire whisk)

Measuring cups and measuring spoons.

A cute apron!!


Now that you’ve got everything, let’s get started!


Preheat oven. 350°F. Nuff said.

Put the chocolate into a bowl.  Make sure it is big enough to fit the milk and the chocolate, since you’ll be combining them soon, and to make sure it can hold hot liquids.

Heat the milk in the saucepan till just about boiling, stirring constantly.  This means till your milk has a good ring of froth on the sides.  You don’t want it to form a skin on top, so keep stirring, but you want it to be nice and hot.

Combine chocolate and milk by pouring the milk slowly into the chocolate bowl. Be careful not to splash yourself with the hot milk. Stir together with a wooden spoon until most of the chocolate is melted. Set aside.

In the same pan, melt the butter over low heat. Pour in the flour and cook on low for 1 minute. It will become pasty in consistency, and make sure you get rid of any lumps.

Next pour in the chocolate milk and bring to a boil, stirring constantly with your wooden spoon. It won’t actually “boil” but it will start to get lumpy and pasty. When it starts to get lumpy, you want to then start to stir vigorously, because at this stage it is easy to burn. Take it off the stove when it forms a pasty goo and set aside to cool.
mmmmmm....delicious goo.

Now prepare your ramekins.

Melt the 2 TBS of butter in the microwave in one of the ramekins.  About 15-20 seconds should do, just stay by the microwave while the butter is heating.  If it starts to sizzle or pop, stop the microwave immediately.  You don’t want your butter to explode. It’s not fun to clean up and it has the potential to catch on fire.

Take your melted butter and brush it onto the bottom and sides of the ramekins. What I do is set them in a line and move down the line twice. I start at one end, and when I finish buttering the last one I go back to the first one and butter it again.  I butter two layers on all the ramekins.

Next, take 1 ½ TBS of sugar and put it into ONE of the ramekins. Tap and turn the ramekin to cover the bottom and sides with sugar. To coat the sides hold the ramekin over another one and tap lightly while turning the one you are holding. This will let the sugar go into the ramekin on the table while coating the sides of the one your holding.  Continue till all the ramekins are coated.  If your have extra sugar in the bottom of the last ramekin, just divide it evenly throughout the other ramekins. Set aside.  

Now here comes the complicated part…

Take your egg yokes and stir them into the chocolate mixture. Make sure the mixture is cool before you put the yokes in, otherwise you’ll cook the yokes. 

Now take the egg whites and place them in the mixer bowl.  Make sure that your mixer bowl is metal and very clean.  It needs to be dry on the inside as well. The whites will not whip properly with any foreign objects or liquids in the bowl.  Also, while it’s not critical, the whites will whip better if the bowl is chilled.  It’s a little known chef’s secret, but you can do it without chilling the bowl.

Turn the mixer to speed 6, or medium, and beat till fluffy, or about 10 minutes.
Add 3 TBS of sugar and beat for about 30 seconds more.

Sprinkle the cocoa all over the top of the egg whites and then fold the cocoa in.  Now, what I mean by folding is taking your bowl and tilting it on it’s side, then taking a flat spatula and turning it from the bottom to up and around the side and back down in a circular motion. It’s not stirring but lifting and then folding over the whites. Here is a link to a short video on how to fold. It doesn’t matter how you fold, so long as you don’t stir.

Once you combined the cocoa and the whites take about a third of the whites and beat them into the chocolate mixture.  Then take the rest of the egg whites and fold them into the chocolate mixture. Once you have the egg whites fluffed you need to work quickly, so they won’t loose their volume.

Place the mixture into the ramekins and place the ramekins on a baking sheet.  Put them into the oven for 15 minutes. Make absolutely sure you don’t have any drafts in the house while the soufflés bake, and don’t open the oven! This will make your soufflés fall. When the timer beeps, take them out of the oven and, using a sifter, tap some powdered sugar over the tops.  Serve hot and refrigerate any leftovers.


Annnd done! mmmm...just what you need on a cold wintry night.

Voila!  Tasty soufflés!!

OH! And if a certain physical trainer of mine sees this I only had oneI-I MEAN I D-DIDN'T HAVE ANY! 

2 comments:

  1. Oh my! You are a Goddess in the kitchen! Can't wait to try this. I always thought these were complicated, but you make them seem so simple. Heigh ho Heigh ho it's off to the kitchen I go!

    ReplyDelete
  2. mmmm. art in the kitchen. you make me want to cook and that is a feat in itself. :)

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