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Spiced Dark Chocolate Soufflé

I love things that look difficult but are in fact quite easy.

Spiced Chocolate Souffle

Soufflé is one of those desserts that people assume is terribly difficult to make.  I think it goes back to cartoons and movies where someone is making a soufflé that comes out tall and perfect only to have it collapse in spectacular fashion.  When I was in culinary school I dreaded soufflé day, knowing that they were so terribly hard to make.  I quickly discovered the opposite.  Yes, a souffle can collapse, but if properly constructed, and eaten quickly, you will have puffy, yummy, moist goodness every time.

Spiced Chocolate Souffle

My go-to soufflé recipe uses a roux, but when I saw this meringue based soufflé on Cannelle et Vanille I knew I had to give it a try.  First thing I did was convert the measurements from metric to standard.  I also figured the traditional volume measurements*.   The next thing I did was play with the ingredients and add some spices that I always enjoy with chocolate.  When the weather turns cool I turn to spices, and I feel bitter chocolate benefits from some spicy, robust warmth.  Watch your baking time on these.  If you are like me and have a windowless oven you will want to start checking for doneness at the 15 minute mark.  Nothing is worse than an overcooked soufflé.  You can serve these with powdered sugar, and even some vanilla ice cream.  I like them plain, with the shiny imperfect top.

Spiced Dark Chocolate Soufflé   Yield 4 to 6 servings
Adapted from Cannelle et Vanille

For preparing the ramekins:
3 tablespoons very soft butter
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons grated chocolate

For the soufflé:
3 ounces (3/4 cup) Dutch-processed cocoa
1 1/2 ounces (1/3 cup) cocoa
12 ounces (1 1/2 cups) water
1 cinnamon stick
2 cardamom pods, lightly crushed
2 whole cloves
1 vanilla bean, split and the seeds scraped out
1 1/2 ounces dark (72% or higher) chocolate, chopped
1 egg yolk
2 egg whites
Pinch salt
4 ounces (1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon) sugar
1 ounce grated or finely chopped semi-sweet chocolate

Spiced Chocolate Souffle

Using a pastry brush butter the insides of the ramekin, making sure to brush the butter in upward strokes.  In a small bowl mix the sugar and grated chocolate until well combined.  Pour  mixture into the first ramekin and turn so all the buttered sides are coated.  Pour the excess into the next ramekin and repeat until all the ramekins are coated.   Place the ramekins in the refrigerator until ready to fill.

Heat the oven to 350F.

Spiced Chocolate Souffle Spiced Chocolate SouffleSpiced Chocolate SouffleSpiced Chocolate Souffle

In a medium saucepan bring the water, cinnamon stick, cardamon, cloves, and vanilla bean with the seeds to a boil. Turn off  the heat and let stand, covered, for 10 minutes. Remove the spices, add all the cocoa and whisk well.  Heat the mixture over medium heat until it comes to a boil and thickens.  Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly, about five minutes.  Once cooled  whisk in the egg yolk.

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In a medium bowl whip the egg whites with the salt.   Once they reach soft peaks begin to slowly add the sugar and whip until the mixture reaches medium-stiff peaks.

Spiced Chocolate Souffle Spiced Chocolate Souffle Spiced Chocolate Souffle

Working in three batches, fold the egg whites into the cocoa paste until the whites are uniformly incorporated.  Fold in the grated chocolate.

Spiced Chocolate Souffle

Divide the mixture into the ramekins, filling nearly to the top. Bake until the soufflé rise, the time will vary depending on the size of your ramekins, but for six servings it will take about 15 minutes.  Do not over-bake.

Spiced Chocolate Souffle Serve immediately.

Spiced Chocolate Souffle

*I did this to avoid the issues that my Raspberry and Chocolate Ganache Cake with White Chocolate Buttercream has had with readers who do  not use a scale – and, you really do need to invest in a scale if you have not already.  It will only serve to make you a more precise baker.

Just Desserts Elimination Challenge … Challenge!

As you can see above I did not have time to do my petit four for the challenge this week … trust me when I say I am BEYOND busy, but some other bloggers did!

Marye from Restless Chipotle made Pumpkin Pecan Perfection and they do look perfect!  Yum!!

Over at The Twisted Chef she mad TWO kinds of petit fours, and i would eat them both all up!

Also, Bravo has a preview for tonight’s show to share below!


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23 Responses to “Spiced Dark Chocolate Soufflé”

  1. I have never made a souffle for fear of it being a total disaster, but this may change my mind…

  2. Joy says:

    I have been one of those people that I’m scared making them. Thanks for sharing. I have to try it now.

  3. Brie says:

    heck yes, that looks divine. oh, how i wish i had one of these right now…

  4. Megan says:

    I was expecting to see some chocolate dresses over here today. Ha ha. The souffle is beautiful! I may be attempting a pumpkin one some time soon. I’m a little intimidated by souffle.

  5. If you can’t eat it too quickly, will it still taste good? I try to eat chocolate slowly.

  6. i mean, who WOULDN’T eat this immediately?! yum!

  7. Kelly says:

    Chocolate Priestess – Sure, take your time, just be aware it will shrink as you savor! :)

  8. that looks too good!!!! you’ve inspired me to attempt my very first souffle. Outstanding pictures – as per usual.

    :0)

  9. Evan Thomas says:

    I have never made a souffle, but it looks amazing

  10. Oh!! I am looooooving this – especially the spice!

  11. GreenGirl says:

    Tho I’ve seen many times how a souffle is made, I’m still one of those people who are afraid to even try making it :(

    yours looks so perfect

  12. Me too! I love it when people think you;ve worked much harder than you have! Souffles are perfect for that!

    It looks divine!

  13. Jennifer says:

    I love chocolate and cinnamon together. These look devine and I just bought some ramekins. Sounds like chocolate souffle might be the way to go.

  14. January says:

    that is sooo decadent! haven’t tried making souffle but when i make one, you bet this one is saved in my to-do list :)

  15. Annie says:

    I love a souffle and I too have found that they are easier to make than they look. I just love any excuse to get out my cute little ramekins! Thanks for the recipe, I will be trying it soon!

  16. Elin says:

    I love souffle but I can never get it right :( yours look so chocolatey and mmmm I can imagine how yummy this is…Thanks for sharing :)

    Cheers,
    Elin

  17. the color of your souffle looks phenomenal! and hey, sharing is caring ;)

  18. Eliana says:

    Thsi may help me get over my fear of making souffle. It looks amazing!

  19. Delishhh says:

    I just wanted to let you know i love your blog. I have been following your blogs fora few weeks and it is great. Love your photos too.

  20. Its funny last weekend we made cheese soufflés and though they were good I thought way to much work for what it was however dessert soufflés in my opinion are always so much better. This one looks dark, rich and amazing :) Having an espresso as I write this and this would go perfectly with it :)

  21. This is why a chocoholic like myself should have clicked on the title of the post. *drool*

  22. Wow that souffle looks delicious. I’ve never tried to make them yet, but that rich almost black color has me drooling!

  23. Victoria says:

    Valentines yummy 2011, I love mixing interesting spices with chocolate, I may have to give it a go and mix it up with a little warmer spice mixture since I am a terrible Chili Head…LOL

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