So this is the chocolate soufflé recipe you’ve all been waiting for, but it’s a bit more like a flourless chocolate cake than a soufflé. It doesn’t give a whole lot of height like a traditional soufflé would, primarily because the ratio of egg whites to the volume of the chocolate base is low.
But alas, what comes up must come down, and most towering soufflés do indeed collapse by the time you set them in front of your guests — which is why I like these less fancy little things. They’re denser and more chocolate-y and if you take them out at just the right moment, they’re a little gooey in the middle in the best possible way. They don’t rise as tall, but I think you’ll love them anyway.
Place the chocolate in a medium-sized, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Combine the chocolate with the next 6 ingredients (cream through salt) over low heat and stir gently until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Whip the egg whites with the cream of tartar in an electric mixer (or with a handheld mixer) until soft peaks form. Whisk the yolks into the cooled chocolate mixture, then fold in 1/3 of the whites. Gently fold until the whites are completely incorporated, then repeat with the remaining whites in 2 more batches. Be careful not to overmix; you don’t want to deflate the whites as you work.
Pour the soufflés into eight ¾-cup ramekins and then transfer them to a baking sheet for easy transfer in and out of the oven. Place the sheet of prepared soufflés on the center rack of the oven and bake for 12-15 minutes, until they are puffed but still soft in the center. Allow to cool slightly before serving.