I was brainstorming with my sister the other day about whether it would be possible to increase the shelf life of an uncooked souffle by adding gelatine to it. I figure the gelatine should hold the air in the egg whites and then melt when it is cooked... Has anyone tried this? Or does anyone have any flaws which i may have missed? Any help would be appreciated.
Adding gelatine to a souffle mix?
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I know that jelly has no air bubbles in it, but every recipe i know for a souffle requires whisking egg white and then incorporating them. The one in that video has me baffled as to how it rose. There was no whisking of egg white or cream anywhere. Which still has me asking when making the mix and whisking the egg whites, could some gelatine be added to that to make the air stay in there?
There are some recipes for fruited souffles that call for gelatin, but they do not use egg whites as the souffle is not baked.
These souffles use whipping cream as the base and are served cold. For instance you can make a cranberry souffle by folding in a can of mashed jellied cranberry sauce to a cooled down bechamel sauce, then fold this mixture with the whipped cream. This mixture is poured into a souffle dish with a wax paper collar for the height thing.
The so called soufflé in the video is in fact a quiche! A quiche uses a mixture of eggs with milk/cream that will rise a little, just like in the video. The high amount of eggs makes the preparation rise. The bread in it will act like a sponge and expand resulting in a little more volume. But, it still is a quiche, not a soufflé that rises much higher and gets a much nicer fluffy content.
The question of using gelatine in eggwhites to prepare a soufflé in advance is another matter.
It is true as Chefross mentions that eggwhites and gelatine are combined in a dessert called a "bavarois". The amount of gelatine in that cold preparation is quite high. I have to add that I never heard of using a béchamel in a bavarois. It's mainly fruit purée, whisked cream, beaten eggwhite and plenty gelatine.
There are more examples of using gelatine to support the consistency of a cold preparation. I know a lot of people use a little gelatine in chocolate mousse to support the "foamyness". A little gelatine is also used in sorbets to keep them from melting too soon!
For a real soufflé, you can easily prepare the base (béchamel for hearty soufflés or crème patissière etc. for sweet ones), add additions except the eggwhites, a long time before baking the soufflé. Just add some beaten eggwhite at the very last moment minutes before they go in the oven. A perfect soufflé partially depends on correctly beaten eggwhites. The slightest drop of eggyolk in it will lead to a desaster. Before beating the eggwhite, just put some drops of ordinary white vinegar in your bowl and rub around with a piece of kitchen papertowl. Also degrease your whisk with it!! Rinse with a little water and dry again with paper towl for a perfect result. And of course there's the correct preparation of the ramekins.
Edited by ChrisBelgium - 7/8/11 at 5:26am