Don’t open the oven door during the first seven minutes of baking this lemon souffle, but do check the souffle regularly for doneness during the final few minutes of baking. Be ready to serve the souffle immediately after removing it from the oven. Using a 10-inch traditional (not nonstick) skillet is essential to getting the right texture and height in the lemon souffle.–Editors of Cook’s Illustrated
LC Lovely Lemony Lilt Note
The preceding words of practical advice from the analytical minds over at Cook’s Illustrated is just the sort of critical left-brained commentary we’ve come to expect from them. Yet it doesn’t exactly say anything about why you’d want to bother attempting this recipe. Allow us. For starters, there’s the lovely lilt of lemon, the aw-shucks-I-just threw-it-together weeknight-friendly appeal, the fact that it requires a plain old skillet in place of a fussy souffle dish…shall we go on?
Lemon Soufflé Recipe
Hands-On Time: 20 minutes | Total Time: 30 minutes | Serves 6
- 5 large eggs, separated
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 2/3 cup (4 2/3 ounces) granulated sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup juice from 2 to 3 lemons
- 1 teaspoon grated zest from 1 lemon
- 2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting
- 1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Using an electric mixer, whip the egg whites and cream of tartar together on medium-low speed until foamy, about 1 minute. Slowly add 1/3 cup of the granulated sugar and the salt, then increase the mixer speed to medium-high, and continue to whip until stiff peaks form, 3 to 5 minutes. Gently transfer the whites to a clean bowl and set aside.
- 2. Using an electric mixer (no need to wash the mixing bowl), whip the yolks and the remaining 1/3 cup sugar together on medium-high speed until pale and thick, about 1 minute. Whip in the lemon juice, zest, and flour until incorporated, about 30 seconds.
- 3. Fold one-quarter of the whipped egg whites into the yolk mixture until almost no white streaks remain. Gently fold in the remaining egg whites until just incorporated.
- 4. Melt the butter in a 10-inch ovenproof (not nonstick) skillet over medium-low heat. Swirl the pan to coat it evenly with the melted butter, then gently scrape the lemon souffle batter into the skillet and cook over medium-low heat until the edges begin to set and bubble slightly, about 2 minutes.
- 5. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake the souffle until puffed, the center jiggles slightly when shaken, and the surface is golden, 7 to 11 minutes. Using a potholder (the skillet handle will be hot), remove the skillet from the oven. Dust the soufflé with the confectioners’ sugar and serve immediately.
- Grating the chocolate fine is key here; we find it easiest to use either a rasp grater or the fine holes of a box grater.
- Follow the recipe for Lemon Souffle, substituting 1 tablespoon grated zest from 1 orange for the lemon zest, and 1/3 cup orange juice for the lemon juice. Gently fold 1 ounce finely grated bittersweet chocolate (about 1/2 cup) into the souffle batter after incorporating all of the whites in step 3.
Hungry for more? Chow down on these:
- Passion Fruit Soufflé Glacé with Pineapple Fruit Soup from Dessert First
- Lemon, Lime & Orange Soufflé from Almost Bourdain
- Double Chocolate Soufflé from Leite's Culinaria
- Georgia Peach Soufflés from Leite's Culinaria
Lemon Soufflé Recipe © 2009 Editors of Cook's Illustrated. Photo © 2009 Keller & Keller. All rights reserved.