Make Ahead Chocolate Souffle Addendum

These are a few followup notes I have for the Go-To Chocolate Dessert for 2010, having made them again this morning for an upcoming dinner party:

  • Have all ingredients at room temperature before starting.

We’ve all seen this in baking recipes, but have proceeded to use eggs and butter straight from the fridge, figuring this can’t make that much of a difference.  Well, I’m here to say that it does.  I noticed that this time the volume of my beaten yolks and particularly my beaten whites was significantly larger, and they were easier to fold in.  I don’t think this is insignificant.  I had left my eggs and butter on the shelf in the kitchen last night before mixing the souffles this morning.

  • Don’t use chocolate chips in place of regular bar chocolate*

This is something I’ve heard from the America’s Test Kitchen/Cooks Illustrated people.  When melting chocolate chips, they stay thicker, because of an emulsifier that is added to the chocolate to keep the chocolate thick, and in chip form.  This means melted chocolate chips have a much thicker consistency than regular melted chocolate bars.  I’d that this would make souffles less likely to rise as high if made with chocolate chips than with regular bars.

*That said, with only the chips in my pantry this morning, I used about a half cup of water to thin out the chocolate when I melted it, and it seemed to make the chocolate mixture more “normal” thickness.  We’ll see later next week if this changes how the souffles come out.

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