Who's Afraid Of Soufflés?

It's a classic treat, but the word "soufflé" throws terror into the heart of many cooks.

However, cookbook author and cooking teacher Tori Ritchie says this puffed up prima donna is actually easy to make.

She showed how it's done Thursday in The Early Show's "Five Minute Cooking School," at the Manhattan flagship store of specialty home furnishings retailer Williams-Sonoma. Ritchie

to co-anchor Hannah Storm.

Soufflés date back to 18th-century France, and their reputation for being complex and easy to ruin is almost as old. It's really an undeserved reputation. Soufflés are actually quite easy to make. As James Beard put it, the only thing that will make a soufflé fall is if it knows you are afraid of it.

The word "soufflé" comes from the French verb "souffler," which means, among several things, "to blow air." A soufflé gets its magnificent but unstable height from bubbles of hot air trapped in its delicate structure. When the soufflé cools, the hot air contracts and the soufflé deflates. It's simple physics. There are a number of tips for keeping your soufflé all puffed up and enjoying it at its peak, but the most important one is "serve immediately." source:

There is a soufflé out there for everyone. Savory or sweet, vegetable or fruit, meat or vegetarian, hot or cold. (Cold soufflés, by the way, are called mousses).