I really, really love chocolate–from the worst mostly-sugar milk chocolate to the bitterest cacao nib–and that’s why I think I don’t care for chocolate cake. Why would I eat chocolate-flavored flour when I could be having a creamy chocolate tart, chocolate ice cream, or even chocolate pudding?
That’s why, since I started fine-dining with my wonderful boyfriend four years ago, I’ve avoided the ubiquitous chocolate soufflé and, in fact, soufflés in general. Little did I know, though, that I was denying myself a real pleasure by not forcing restaurants’ kitchen staff to display their technical prowess for me.
My first great soufflé was at The Mark Restaurant by Jean-Georges. In an otherwise just-okay meal, this Grand Marnier concoction really stood out with its crusty shell and creamy interior. I’m not saying I have any manners, but I really don’t usually dip my fingers into a serving dish to clean out every last crumb like I did here.
The next one I had–the one that really convinced me–was the green tea soufflé at TriBeCafe. It’s a great place in general with a $23, four-course prix-fixe menu full of only-delicious Japanese-inspired comfort foods, but that soufflé was really something special. It was earthy without being grassy and fluffy without leaving that why-did-I-just-eat-a-plate-of-air? feeling you get from things like angel food cake.
I guess maybe I’m just a sucker for things that are crunchy on the outside and gooey on the inside, like French macarons, Oreos, and you. So even though I don’t see myself ordering the chocolate soufflé any time soon, apparently other flavors suit me just fine.