40g unsalted butter, plus extra, at room temperature, to grease
150g caster sugar, plus 1/4 cup (55g) extra
200g good quality dark chocolate with 70% cocoa solids, chopped, plus 75g extra, grated
2 egg yolks, plus 5 eggwhites
150ml pure cream
1 Preheat oven to 220C or 200C fan. Brush six 1/2-cup soufflé dishes evenly with extra butter (see my secrets, below right). Chill for 5 mins. Brush lightly with another layer of extra butter. Place 1 tbsp of extra caster sugar into a soufflé dish and roll around inside of dish to evenly coat. Pour any excess sugar into another soufflé dish. Repeat with remaining extra sugar and soufflé dishes.
2 Half-fill a small saucepan with water and heat on medium-high. Bring to boil, then remove from heat. Place chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl that fits neatly over pan without touching water. Place bowl over pan and set aside until chocolate and butter slowly melt together. Remove bowl from pan and stir. Add egg yolks and stir to combine.
3 Using a whisk or electric mixer, beat eggwhites and 2 tbsp of caster sugar until soft peaks form. Gradually sprinkle in 80g of remaining caster sugar, beating constantly until soft, shiny peaks form.
4 Using a flexible spatula, fold one-third of eggwhite mixture into chocolate mixture. Gently mix in a clockwise direction several times, making sure you mix from centre of base of bowl. Turn bowl in an anticlockwise direction a full turn and repeat mixing process, until eggwhite is thoroughly incorporated. Add remaining eggwhite and repeat mixing process, making sure you don’t knock too much air out.
5 Divide mixture between soufflé dishes, filling dishes almost to top. Bake for 10 mins, until soufflés rise 3cm above tops of dishes.
6 Meanwhile, whip cream and remaining caster sugar until soft peaks form. Fold in extra grated chocolate. Serve soufflés immediately topped with chocolate cream.
• Use softened, not melted, butter to grease the soufflé dishes. Dip a pastry brush into the butter, wiping off any excess, then evenly grease each dish, including the lip. When brushing the dishes for the second time, use even, upward strokes to grease the sides.
• It’s so important to be careful when incorporating the beaten eggwhite into the chocolate mixture. Stirring too roughly can knock the air out of the eggwhite, which will result in dense soufflés that barely rise.