Monday, November 15, 2010

Daring Cooks November 2010: Souffles

Dave and Linda from Monkeyshines in the Kitchen chose Soufflés as our November 2010 Daring Cooks’ Challenge! Dave and Linda provided two of their own delicious recipes plus a sinfully decadent chocolate soufflé recipe adapted from Gordon Ramsay’s recipe found at the BBC Good Food website.

I will admit...when I read what this month's challenge was I was incredibly intimidated. 


Make a souffle???

Are you kidding me??

The only thing that kept playing in my head over and over again was a scene in one of the Charlie's Angels movies where Lucy Lui's trailer is being shot up and all she's concerned about is whether her souffle deflated or not. 


I've heard the horror stories. 

I've heard that you need intense quiet or your souffle will fall.

I have a 3 year old people!! How am I supposed to be able to get a souffle to rise with a crazy 3 year old running around the house???

So...before I tried one of the provided recipes, I decided to try a delicious sounding recipe that one of the Daring Cook members posted. 

Sarahj from Yay! For Baking!!! posted a recipe for a non-fat pumpkin souffle. And I think by now you all may or may not know that I am a sucker for pumpkin.

So I needed to try it out. 

I made this recipe for a dinner party. And let me tell you...making souffles while your house is full of loud Army guys does NOT work.

Needless to say, my souffle deflated very quickly.

They came out of the oven all fluffed up and pretty. But caved in about 90 seconds later.

Luckily, I snapped some photos before the little guys died. 

But who cares! These were absolutely delicious!!!

And now, thanks to Dave and Linda for forcing me to make souffles and Sarahj for posting this recipe I get to share it with you!

To see how the other Daring Cooks did with this challenge, head over to the blogroll and check it out.

And don't forget to stop by on Wednesday to see how my second attempt at making a souffle turned out!

Let's get started.

Grab your ingredients: skim milk, cream of tartar, ground nutmeg, ground ginger, ground cinnamon, ground cloves, ground allspice (please don't ask me what the allspice is doing in this picture because I just don't know), cornstarch, granulated sugar and egg whites.

Start by spraying your ramekins with non-stick cooking spray and coating with granulated sugar. The recipe recommended preparing 8 ramekins. But either my ramekins are too big or my egg whites didn't puff enough because I was only able to fill 3 ramekins with the batter. However, I'm willing to bet it was me and I'll tell you what I most likely did wrong later.

Combine the milk, cornstarch, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, ginger and 1 1/2 teaspoon sugar in a small saucepan. Heat over medium high heat until thick, stirring constantly.

Add the pumpkin, mix well. Remove to medium mixing bowl to cool.

In another mixing bowl, add together the egg whites and cream of tartar. 

Here was mistake number one with the egg whites. I used straight from the refrigerator egg whites. And that just doesn't work. Room temperature egg whites stabilize and rise better than cold egg whites. So...remember to allow your egg whites to reach room temperature.

Beat the egg whites until frothy...

Then gradually add in the remaining 1/3 cup of sugar while continuing to beat the egg whites.

You should probably not dump the sugar like this. Add the sugar in about a tablespoon at a time making sure it's well mixed in before adding more.

Continue to beat until stiff peaks form. Mine never really got to stiff. Sad. 

Fold some of the egg whites into the pumpkin mixture to lighten...

Then working in two batches, fold in the rest of the egg whites.

Place the batter into the prepared ramekins, smoothing the top with a spatula. Run your thumb around the edge of the batter (this is supposed to help the souffle rise straight up). Bake 15-20 minutes.

Remove from oven, snap some pictures, get sad when they immediately deflate, then serve them anyway. Enjoy!!! 

Non-Fat Pumpkin Souffle
Slightly adapted from Yay! For Baking!!!
  • 1/4 cup skim milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 6 tablespoons (3 oz) pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 cup egg whites, room temperature
  • Pinch of cream of tartar
  • 1/3 cup sugar

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
  2. Prep 8 ramekins by spraying with non-stick cooking spray and coating with sugar.
  3. Mix together milk, cornstarch, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, ginger and 1 1/2 teaspoon sugar in a small saucepan. Heat over med-high heat until thick, stirring constantly. Add pumpkin, remove to medium mixing bowl, let cool.
  4. In a super-clean bowl beat the egg whites with cream of tartar until frothy. While beating, add the sugar gradually. Beat until stiff peaks form.
  5. Fold some of the whites into the pumpkin mixture to lighten, then the rest in two batches.
  6. Spoon into ramekins, scraping off the top. Run your thumb around the edge.
  7. Bake 15-20 minutes.
  8. Serve and enjoy!
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