Velvety Chocolate Soufflé

Velvety Chocolate Soufflé

Serves 6

3 large brown cage free eggs (room temperature)
¼ cup “white” sugar
6 oz. “coarsely chopped” bittersweet chocolate
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
6 tablespoons “unsalted” butter
1 tablespoon “softened” butter
1½ teaspoons “unsweetened” Dutch-process cocoa powder
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 425°F

Start by lightly greasing 6 (5 oz.) ramekins with the softened butter. Now, sift the cocoa powder through a strainer before pouring it into 1 ramekin. The goal is to lightly coat each ramekin with the cocoa powder. To do this, simply pour the cocoa powder from one ramekin to the next until they each have a light even coating (avoid any clinging or chunking on the sides).

Fill a saucepan half way with water and start to heat it on the stove (over medium-low heat). In a small heatproof bowl, add the chocolate, unsalted butter, and vanilla extract (use a fork to combine gently). Allow the bowl to simmer over the saucepan while stirring with a whisk until the mixture is smooth. The bowl should never directly touch the water. Alternatively, place a nonmetal bowl in the microwave and heat for 20 to 30 seconds. Set this bowl aside.

At high speed, use a blender and its whisk attachment to thoroughly mix the sugar and the (room-temperature) eggs; approx. 2 to 5 minutes. The mission is to have the eggs double or triple in volume. When the whisk is lifted above the bowl, a thick stream of the mixture should slowly fall back into the bowl. Now, use a rubber spatula to pour this mixture on top of the chocolate mixture. Use a strainer to sift a light cover of flour over the top of the mixture before slowly folding the mixture with the spatula. Repeat this process until all the flour has been folded in (approx. 3 to 4 folds).

Fill each ramekin until three-fourths full and place them in the freezer for 1 to 1½ hours. Place the ramekins on a baking sheet and bake for 17 to 20 minutes or until the soufflés rise above the ramekins’ edges (approx. ¼ to ½ inch above).

The perfect soufflé is pastry-like on the outside and runny in the middle.

Best served warm in the ramekins and topped with a sprinkle of confectioners’ sugar.

Diva Tips:

• I love to top these beautiful soufflés with fresh raspberries or sliced strawberries and a sprinkle of confectioners’ sugar. For those wishing to be more decadent, serve them with a little vanilla ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream, too.
• These soufflés may be removed from the ramekins by simply and carefully running a knife around the inside of the ramekins.
• Although these soufflés may be prepared in advance and stored in the freezer, do not keep frozen for more than 10-days.

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