Chocolate lovers looking for a cure for their Monday Blues, rejoice! This luxurious Chocolate Soufflé recipe, featured below, by FOUR magazine's latest Chef of the Day - Grand Chef Relais & Chateaux Colin Bedford - could liven up even the dreariest start to the week. Currently at the helm of The Fearrington House in Pittsboro, USA - which has garnered AAA's Five Diamond Award since Colin's arrival - Colin's culinary style is an interplay of the culinary traditions of the American South, local ingredients, and his own English roots. Read Colin's full chef profile, here.
24 ounces 100% Valhrona chocolate
4 cups 2% milk
5 tbsp cornstarch
2 cups egg whites (approximately 12 eggs)
4 cups heavy cream
8oz 100% Valhrona chocolate
1 ¼ cup sugar
2 cups heavy cream
2tbsp confectioners’ sugar
1 vanilla bean
1 cup granulated sugar
Brush 8 3 – 5 ounce ramekins with melted unsalted butter, using an upward motion. Coat each with granulated sugar.
Melt chocolate in a double boiler until hot to the touch. Reserve ¼ cup of the milk, and pour remainder slowly into the cornstarch, stirring to prevent lumps.
Bring the remaining ¼ cup milk to a simmer and slowly whisk in the cornstarch mixture. Simmer for two minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Pour the chocolate into a mixer with the paddle attachment. Divide the milk into five pours, pouring in intervals into the melted chocolate, mixing well after each. After the milk has been added, turn the heat to high for one minute, then remove from heat. Place into a covered container and store in the refrigerator until needed.
Bring the cream to a simmer, then add remaining ingredients, using a hand mixer to help incorporate fully. Remove from heat, place in a covered container and refrigerate until ready to use.
Combine all the ingredients and whip to a soft peak. Place into a piping bag with a half inch plan top. (You can omit the bag and use a spoon)
Preheat oven to 350C.
Heat the base and the sauce in a water bath until warm. Place two cups of egg whites into a mixing bowl. Whisk until foamy, then slowly add the 1 cup of sugar, whisking until the mixture forms a medium peak. Add 8oz of the warm soufflé base to a mixing bowl, then whisk in 1/3 of the whipped egg whites. Fold in the remaining egg whites. Spoon into sugared molds and repeatedly tap each mold to remove any bubbles. Blow torch the top to prevent cracking.
Place into the oven and cook for 10 minutes, rotating after five minutes.
To serve, remove soufflés from the oven, and using the back of the spoon, push in the middle each to make a hole. Pour in the chocolate sauce and add the whipped cream.
NB:Using egg whites that were prepared the day before, and preparing the molds a day in advance, will help ensure a straight, consistent soufflé. Any remaining soufflé base will hold in the fridge in a covered container for up to one week.