When we think of soufflé, most of us probably think of dessert. To be honest, I never even thought too much about a savory soufflé, but looking through Volume 10 of a 1958 cookbook series, “The Encyclopedia of Cooking” by Mary Margaret McBride, the savory soufflé recipes caught my eye. This bacon soufflé literally jumped off the page at me – because honestly, doesn’t bacon make so many things just taste awesome? Plus, if it had bacon in it, I knew it would be something Mr. Smarty-pants would like.
I fell in love with dessert soufflés many years ago when I had the incredibly good fortune to be in Dallas, Texas and have dinner at the amazing Mansion on Turtle Creek. The entire meal was beyond delicious, but the only thing I can recall in absolute detail is the Grand Marnier soufflé that we ordered for dessert. Right then and there, I started a lifelong love of soufflés…though I have to admit, I’m always a bit gun-shy making them at home. I think it’s the “serve immediately” that gives me the jitters. I can barely remember a time I ever made a meal that anyone was ready to eat…immediately. Know what I mean?
This is a great first soufflé if you have never made a soufflé before, as it doesn’t require the blending of beaten egg yolks AND whites typical of most soufflés. I put an aluminum foil collar on the baking dish, since I didn’t know how much this would “puff.” It’s not necessary with this particular soufflé – it really doesn’t rise beyond the top of the dish. This would be an excellent dish to serve for brunch – it was also great for a light dinner. I tweaked the vintage recipe just the tiniest bit.
This vintage cookbook has excellent tips for soufflé making of all types – check some of them out after the recipe!
- 1 cup, approximately ½ to ¾ pound, diced, fried bacon
- 6 slices of bread
- 5 well beaten eggs (beat them with electric mixer until thick and lemon colored)
- ¾ teaspoon salt (Note: If you are not using low-sodium bacon, you might want to decrease the salt to ¼ teaspoon so the finished soufflé is not overly salty)
- ¼ teaspoon dry mustard
- 2 cups of milk
- ¼ teaspoon white pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Dice bacon and cook until light brown. Reserve bacon fat and drain bacon on paper towels.
Grease a straight-side soufflé casserole with bacon fat. Arrange bread in layers in casserole, sprinkling the cooked bacon and a little of the bacon fat over each layer. Reserve some of the cooked bacon for the top.
Add salt, dry mustard, paprika and milk to eggs and pour over bread.
Bake at 350 degrees until the soufflé is puffy and knife inserted in center comes out clean, about one hour. Serve from soufflé casserole dish.
This soufflé turned out delicious! We really devoured it.
A Few Soufflé Making Tips
- Use eggs at room temperature. Egg whites will fluff up much more if allowed to warm up to room temperature.
- French chefs always beat an extra egg white into a soufflé for lightness. Beat in 4 whites to every 3 yolks.
- A straight-sided dish gives maximum volume.
- Egg yolks are beaten until thick and lemon colored; egg whites until stiff and glossy but not dry.
- For a soufflé with 3-4 eggs, use a 1 and ½ quart dish; for a soufflé with more than 4 eggs, use a 2-quart dish.
- For the highest rise, butter or oil only the bottom of the dish. The mixture will cling to the dry sides and make a taller and more uniform soufflé.
- For extra height, tie a folded strip of aluminum foil around the outside of the soufflé dish to act as a “collar” to support the rise. Pour soufflé mixture in almost to the top of the dish.
- To bake a “top hat” soufflé, pour the souffle’ mixture into the baking dish, then run a teaspoon all around about one inch from the edge and about one inch deep. The crease will cause the crust to break at this point and form a taller center.
- A soufflé starts to fall as soon as it starts to cool. If your meal is delayed, turn the oven temperature to very low (250 degrees) and leave the soufflé in the oven, but not for more than an extra 10-15 minutes.
I’m definitely going to try another savory soufflé! What kind of soufflés do you like or make?
Thanks so much for visiting today and I hope you have the best Sunday!