Healthy Indulgences: Chocolate Basmati Rice Soufflé (recipe)

Andrew Blackmore, friend and fellow chef, came up with this recipe by accident when he used my rice flour instead for all-purpose. Luckily he was in a hurry and didn’t notice the mistake. Andrew’s version of this classic soufflé is enhanced by the earthy flavor of the rice flour. Basmati rice flour isn’t always easy to find: to make it yourself, grind the rice in a coffee or spice grinder then pass it through a fine sifter.

Serves 6
6 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped into even chunks
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup sugar
5 tablespoons basmati rice flour
1 cup milk
Pinch of salt
5 egg yolks, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
7 egg whites

Place the chocolate in a dry, microwave-safe container. Melt the chocolate in the microwave: heat for 1 minute at half (50%) power. Remove from microwave and stir with a spatula. If the chocolate is not completely melted, put the chocolate in for another 30 seconds at half power. Stir and set aside to cool.

Preheat oven to 400º F. Coat the bottom and sides of six 6-ounce ramekins with 2 tablespoons of the butter. Sprinkle the bottoms and sides evenly with the sugar. Tap out excess sugar and reserve for later use.

In a medium saucepan, melt the remaining 4 tablespoons butter. Stir in basmati rice flour and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture begins to bubble, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add milk, melted chocolate and salt. Cook over medium-low heat until mixture thickens, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow mixture to cool for 10 minutes. Whisk in beaten egg yolks and vanilla.

In a large bowl, beat egg whites with an electric mixer, until foamy. Gradually add the reserved sugar, beating until stiff. Fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture. Gently spoon the mixture into prepared soufflé dishes.  I like to sprinkle a little extra sugar on top of the soufflés to make them a little crustier.

Place the ramekins on a baking sheet and bake for 12 to 16 minutes or until puffed and browned. Serve immediately.

(Recipe from “Flavors First: An Indian Chef’s Culinary Journey” by Vikas Khanna)

 For the month of July, Intent Blog is featuring 30 Days of Recipes. Everyday we’ll feature recipes and food-related articles contributed by bloggers in the health and wellness sphere. Our intent is to encourage you to get back into the kitchen and re-connect with your food in a way that promotes greater health, happiness and well-being! This week, we’re focusing on healthy indulgences. If you have a recipe to contribute, please send it to us (along with a brief story about why you love it)  at editor [at] intent.com.

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About Vikas Khanna

Born in Amritsar, India to Davinder and Bindu Khanna. Starting as a helper in his grandmother's kitchen, he learnt most the secrets and correct use of spices from her. His first job, at the age of 12, was that of supplying glassware to Amritsar Club.   He had started developing recipes at a very young age and at 16, opened his own banquets called Lawrence Gardens banquets to host weddings and family functions. Graduated from Welcomgroup Graduate School of Hotel Administration in 1994. Started "SAANCH" - The cultural festival at the college which brought together foods and traditions of different regions of India, which is an integral part of the college even now. Learnt the art of sculpting stone and wood from Jaipur, Mysore, Udipi and Sagar in Karnataka, which was exhibited in the college. He has worked for the Taj, Oberoi, Welcomgroup, and Leela Group of Hotels, with some of the most influential chefs of India. Moved to the New York in December, 2000 and has studied at Cornell University, Culinary Institute of America, New York University and many more while starting as a dishwasher and working his way up to becoming the Executive Chef of Salaam Bombay Restaurant in New York. He frequently lectures at many Univerisities around the country. He is a consultant to many restaurants in the US and has his own line of packaged foods, Gourmetgurus. Vikas Khanna launched SAKIV (South Asian Kid's Infinite Vision) and SAKIV- World to reach out to eye foundations around the world in an effort to create awareness about vision disorders in children. Vision of Palate is his award winning workshop developed to educate people with visual disbilities about the sense of taste, flavor and aromas.