Rising to the Occasion

This winter, I have been experimenting with making soufflé.  After two successful rounds – a gruyère cheese soufflé, followed by a mushroom one that puffed up nicely – it was time to break one out for a dinner party.

Not just any get-together, but one with the kind of friends who will laugh with you if you totally mess it up.  Our friends Karen and Kelly were up to the challenge.

Soufflé really isn’t difficult to make.  You just have to use a dish with sides that are high enough that everything doesn’t overflow into the oven (I like this round Dutch oven from Le Creuset).  You also need to babysit things a bit at the start – and very importantly – keep the egg whites completely free of any yolk.

I used a recipe from Julia Child's classic “Mastering the Art of French Cooking.”  I rarely cook from this book, as the recipes tend to have too many steps for my taste, but this one is pretty basic.

While I could post a video of me making it, this episode of “The French Chef” circa 1972 is much more entertaining.   Pour yourself a drink, and settle in for 29 minutes of Julia's wit and wisdom.  I promise you’ll have a few laughs (“buttah is bettah!”) – and learn to make an awesome soufflé.  You’ll also get the complete recipe:

In case you’re wondering, here’s how mine turned out: