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You may get six or eight soufflés out of this recipe. Dry days (as opposed to humid weather) will help make the meringue loftier, too.
- 1 cup sugar plus more for ramekins
- 2 Tbsp. natural unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
- 8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, melted, cooled
- 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter plus more for ramekins
- Flaky sea salt (such as Maldon; for serving)
- Olive Oil Ice Cream or prepared ice cream, any flavor (for serving)
Six to eight 6-oz. ramekins and a candy thermometer
Preheat oven to 375°. Butter ramekins, then sprinkle with sugar, shaking out excess; place on a rimmed baking sheet.
Whisk milk and cocoa powder in a small saucepan. Bring just to a simmer over medium heat; remove from heat and set aside.
Melt 2 Tbsp. butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and cook, stirring, until mixture smells nutty and is light golden, about 1 minute. Whisk in warm milk mixture and cook, whisking constantly, until mixture is the consistency of a thin pudding, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in egg yolks. Transfer mixture to a large bowl and whisk in chocolate until smooth. Set base aside.
Whisk 1 cup sugar and ¼ cup water in a small saucepan. Attach thermometer to the side of pan; bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat to medium-high, and cook, without stirring, until thermometer registers 248°. Remove from heat.
Meanwhile, using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar in a medium bowl until frothy. With mixer running, gradually add hot sugar mixture, drizzling down side of bowl. Increase speed to high and beat egg whites until stiff peaks form, about 4 minutes.
Fold ⅓ of meringue into base to loosen, then fold in remainder just until combined (a few streaks of meringue are fine).
Fill prepared ramekins up to ¼” below the rim with batter (you may not use all the ramekins). Bake, without opening oven door, until soufflés rise and centers are set, 18–22 minutes.
Sprinkle soufflés with sea salt and serve warm with ice cream.
DO AHEAD: Soufflé base can be made 6 hours ahead. Let cool; cover and chill. Make and fold in meringue just before baking.