The admirable lightness and delicacy of a well-made souffle render it generally a very favourite dish, and it is now a fashionable one also. It may be greatly varied in its composition, but in all cases must be served the very instant it is taken from the oven; and even in passing to the dining-room it should, if possible, be prevented from sinking by a heated iron or salamander held above it. A common souffle-pan may be purchased for a dollar, in England, but those of silver or plated metal are of course expensive; the part in which the souffle is baked is placed within the more ornamental dish when it is drawn from the oven. A plain, round, shallow cake-mould, with a strip of writing-paper six inches high, placed inside the rim, will answer on an emergency to bake a souffle in. The following receipt will serve as a guide for the proper mode of making it: the process is always the same whether the principal ingredient be whole rice boiled very tender in milk and pressed through a sieve, bread-crumbs soaked as for a pudding and worked through a sieve also, arrow-root, potato-flour, or anything else of which light puddings in general are made.
* As we have before said, a much more delicate flavour is imparted by rasping the lemon rind on sugar.
Take from a pint and a half of new milk or of cream sufficient to mix four ounces of flour of rice to a perfectly smooth batter; put the remainder into a very clean, well-tinned saucepan, and when it boils, stir the rice briskly to it; let it simmer, keeping it stirred all the time,. for ten minutes, or more should it not be very thick, then mix well with it two ounces of fresh butter, one and a half of pounded sugar, and the grated rind of a fine lemon (or let the sugar which is Used for it be well rubbed on the lemon before it is crushed to powder); in two or three minutes take it from the fire, and beat quickly and carefully to it by degrees the yolks of six eggs; whisk the whites to a very firm solid froth, and when the pan is buttered, and all else quite ready for the oven, stir them gently to the other ingredients; pour the souffle immediately into the pan and place it in a moderate oven, of which keep the door closed for a quarter of an hour at least. When the souffle has risen very high, is of a fine colour, and quite done in the centre, which it will be in from half to three quarters of an hour, send it instantly to table. The exact time for baking it depends so much on the oven that it cannot be precisely specified.
We have known quite a small one not too much baked in forty-five minutes in an iron oven; but generally less time will suffice for them: the heat, however, should always be moderate.
New milk or cream, 1 1/2 pint; flour of rice, 4 ozs.; fresh butter, 2 ozs.; pounded sugar, 1 1/2 oz.; eggs, 6; grain of salt; rind, 1 lemon: 30 to 45 minutes.
The souffle may be flavoured with vanilla, orange-flowers, or aught else that is liked. Chocolate and coffee also may be used for it with soaked bread: a very strong infusion of the last, and an ounce or two of the other, melted with a little water, are to be added to the milk and bread.
A souffle is commonly served in a dinner of ceremony as a remove of the roast, but the better plan for this, as for a fondu, is to have it quickly handed round, instead of being placed upon, the table.
Mix to a smooth batter, with a quarter of a pint of new milk, two ounces of potato-flour, arrow-root, or tous les mois: pour boilinig to them three quarters of a pint more of milk, or of cream in preference, stir them well together, and then throw in two ounces of butter cut small. When this is melted, and well-beaten into the mixture, add the well whisked yolks of four large or of five small eggs, half a teaspoonful of salt, something less of cayenne, and three ounces of lightly-grated cheese, Parmesan or rich old cheese, or equal parts of both. Whisk the whites of the eggs to a quite firm and solid froth; then proceed, as for a souffle, to mix and bake the fondu. 20 minutes.