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Don't be intimidated by this perfectly textured, savory polenta-based soufflé.
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3/4 cup water
1/3 cup polenta
Lots of salt and pepper
3 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
1/3 cup shredded Parmesan
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
In a small saucepan, bring water to a boil. Whisk in the polenta and cover with lid. Cook until polenta is done.
Remove the lid, stir in the butter, continuing to whisk, then add salt, pepper and the flour, whisking until thick, about 1-2 minutes. Pour in the milk and continue to whisk until incorporated. Remove the pan from heat and set aside to cool slightly.
Carefully separate the egg yolks from the whites. Add the whites to a clean metal bowl and set aside. Add the yolks and shredded cheese to the cooled polenta mixture.
In the bowl with the egg whites, add the cream of tartar and beat with the mixer until stiff and glossy peaks form. Fold a little of the whites into the polenta mixture, then add the polenta mixture to the whites, folding gently to be careful not to deflate the whites too much.
When it's combined, spoon the mixture into ramekins, leaving a 1/4 inch from the top, and run a butter knife around the edges (this helps create an extra puffed layer on top).
Place the ramekins on a baking sheet, and place the baking sheet on the bottom rack of the oven. Cook at 325°F until puffed and jiggly, about 20-25 minutes.
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- It sounds like you might need to go to culinary school to make this really impressive polenta souffle, but I'm telling you, you don't. It is so easy. Let's make it together. The first thing that I wanna do is cook my polenta. And I'm just gonna add this right into the boiling water and whisk it so that it gets in there. And then I'm gonna cover it with a lid and let it keep cooking. So usually when you get a souffle, it's really light and fluffy, and there's almost not a lot of texture involved. And so adding the polenta really gives it this nice, nutty, kind of coarse texture that I really appreciate, and it's just really subtle. Okay, so, it's literally that fast, my polenta has cooked. And I'm gonna stir it and then I'm gonna add in a few tablespoons of butter and then a good amount of salt and pepper. I'm gonna add in some flour, and this is just gonna help thicken it up even more. And I'm gonna cook it just to get out that raw flavor of the flour and then I'm gonna add some milk to loosen it up and turn it into kind of a white-based sauce. So this is kind of like a Mornay sauce, because we're gonna add a little bit of cheese to it. So this is the part of the souffle that carries all of the flavor. Once this is all combined, we can take it off the stove, and add some cheese. Smells delicious. And then I have four egg yolks, and that's gonna go in there too. So just beat that until it's completely incorporated. And you want to do this off the heat so that you don't cook the egg yolks. Just wanna make a really luscious sauce, just like that. So souffle is actually really easy, and I think people get really intimidated because they think that they can't get a souffle that rises and that it's so sensitive and all of these things, and it's really not. The main thing that you want to keep in mind is separating your egg yolks from your egg whites. So your egg whites cannot rise if any fat gets mixed inside. So you make an entire batter that's full of fat and egg yolk and all of those delicious flavors, and then in this bowl, we just beat the egg whites by themselves, and they really hold all of the air because of the protein structures inside of the egg white. If you break your eggs and you find a little bit of egg yolk inside of it, then just discard that and start over. You really wanna make sure that you have a clean bowl and just egg whites inside. So we're gonna beat these with a little bit of cream of tartar. The cream of tartar really just helps the eggs hold their shape once I beat it. Okay, I think that that's perfect. What you're looking for is this really glossy, like, voluptuous bowl of egg whites, and once you pick it up, if you dip your finger in it and a little stiff peak forms, that is perfect. I'm just gonna take a little bit of that beaten egg white and add it into my heavy bowl of cream and egg and butter, and I'm just gonna fold it in. And this is just gonna kinda lighten this, just enough so that once I start folding it into my beaten egg whites it doesn't deflate it so much. So just lightening it a little bit, folding it in, and you can already see it's really lifting and it's not so heavy. And then this just goes right into my bowl of egg whites. Perfect, and I'm trying to keep it to one side. I'm lifting my spatula up and turning it over. Beautiful, and you see the specks of pepper in there, that's gonna be delicious. We're gonna start filling some buttered and floured ramekins. You really wanna encourage your souffle to rise, that's why you want to butter and flour them so nothing really sticks to the edges. Just a little bit below the rim, because they're gonna rise. Once my ramekins are filled, I like to take a little butter knife and just run it along the edge, and again, this is all just encouraging the souffle to rise, not stick to the sides of my ramekin. So these are gonna go in the oven, and they will rise, I promise you, because this is a foolproof recipe. So my souffles have risen like I promised you. They're beautiful, they're golden, they're cheesy, and it was so easy, you really can make this at home. So get in the kitchen and do it.