Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Get your chef on: lemon soufflé (recipe).

It's finally here! Today is the day that we all get to share our "Get Your Chef On: Lemons" recipes. I love cooking with lemons, and I can't wait to see what everyone else has come up with! If you haven't heard about the Get Your Chef On challenge, you can learn more here (and see all of the other participants too). 

As soon as I saw that the featured ingredient was lemons, I knew exactly what I wanted to make. I went through a stage last year when I was making soufflés about once a week. I read dozens of recipes and tips, and I took lots of notes every time I made a batch. Then I must have gotten souffléd out because I didn't make a single one for about a year. Luckily, my appetite for soufflés is back, so I pulled out all of my notes and went to work.

Now, the first thing I have to say about soufflés is that you shouldn't be scared of them. They aren't as difficult to make as many people think. I think there are two keys to creating a good soufflé. First, be gentle with the egg whites; fold them gently and don't bang the pans around. Second, precision is important; baking is a science, so order and measurements are very important. These only take about ten minutes to put together, so give them your undivided attention for those ten minutes, and you will be happy with the results. 

I picked these lemons from my father-in-laws tree. Aren't they beautiful!

I love this recipe. The result is a soft, fluffy, light top that becomes richer, thicker, and more custardy at the bottom. It's warm, satisfying, and refreshing all at once. In fact, if I wasn't out of eggs, I'd be making another batch right this instant.

Lemon Soufflé
Serves four

1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tbs flour
1 tbs butter (melted)
2/3 cup milk
4 eggs
zest from 1 large lemon
juice from 1 large lemon
1/4 tsp cream of tarter

extra butter and sugar for the ramekins

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees f.

2) In a large bowl combine sugar, flour, and butter; mix well. Add milk, and whisk until smooth. Add egg yolks, and whisk until smooth. Add lemon juice and zest, then mix well.

3) In another large bowl (or stand mixer) combine the egg whites and cream of tarter. Beat until stiff peaks are formed. 

4) Gently spoon 1/4 of the egg white mixture into the lemon and yolk mixture. Stir together gently, but thoroughly (this lightens up the lemon mixture, and makes it easier to fold in the rest of the whites). 

5) Gently pour the rest of the egg whites into the lemon mixture. Very gently fold in the egg whites. They should be fully incorporated into the mixture with no white spots or streaks (there may be a little lemon mixture at the bottom still - especially if you have a very juicy lemon. This is okay).

6) Grease four 4" (at least 2" high) ramekins with butter. Dust with granulated sugar (swirl a spoonful of sugar in the dish, then tap the excess out). Place the ramekins in a large casserole dish (at least 2.5" high).

7) Gently portion the soufflé mixture into the ramekins. Carefully pour hot water into the casserole dish, around the ramekins; the water should be 1" to 1.5" deep (the water bath helps them cook evenly and smoothly). **Be very careful moving this, especially when it comes out of the oven. Hot water can cause bad burns, and splashes easily.**

8) Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until the tops rise and turn golden brown. Carefully remove from the water, and serve immediately.

Confession: I got carried away, and tried to put two lemons into this batch. They were still delicious,  but they didn't rise as much as they should have. Moral of the story, stick with one lemon for best results.

Linking up to these parties!


  1. Monica- oh Yum! I always like more lemon, so I totally would have done 2 as well! ;) They look wonderful, and super good! Thank you so much for playing along in our fun GYCO Cooking Challenge! I must try these! Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you Jen! I had so much fun participating in GYCO, & can't wait for the next ingredient :)

      I'm always trying to add more flavor (extra lemon, more vanilla, etc) when I cook, lol. I guess sometimes it's best to stick to the recipe.

  2. Your souffle looks heavenly Monica! I've been wanting to tackle souffle for a while now. I will totally be studying your recipe for tips when I get some focused time to concentrate on my souffle baking. Thank you so much for joining GYCO! We hope you'll be back for round 2 in July.

    1. Thank you very much for hosting Julie! I can't wait to see what the next ingredient will be. You and Jen made this such a fun challenge!

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  4. Wow, I need to try this! It looks amazing!

    1. Thank you Dorothy! I'd love to hear how it goes (seriously an easy dessert with a big wow factor!).


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