The perfect way to fold?

Discussion in 'Pastries & Baking' started by agp423, Dec 22, 2011.

  1. agp423

    agp423

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    Hey chefs, what's the perfect way to fold? I started to learn souffles lately but the first few times always ending on crispy tops and moist inside. I tried quite a few recipes, so I feel like it's my folding technique that's causing the issue. Can any chefs give me some tips on how to fold correctly?
     
  2. jellly

    jellly

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    Personally, I find that folding with a balloon whisk or even the whisk attachment I just used on the mixer to incorporate the first third of whites (or whipped cream for mousse) works well.  I will often switch from that to a spatula towards the end to ensure it is blended.

    I wonder if your souffle problems could also be linked to your oven.  Do you have difficulty with any other baking?
     
  3. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    What are you looking to achieve differently?

    I'd be looking more towards the oven rather than folding technique, based on what you posted.
     
  4. agp423

    agp423

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    Quote:
    No difficulties with any other forms of baking. And I tried two different ovens, one at my apt, and one at my parents' house, neither worked. When folding, is it more important to make sure that the whipped whites and the rest of the ingredients blend evenly, or is it more important to sacrifice some even mixing in order to maintain the fluff of the whipped whites?

    Also, I tried to make souffle again earlier today with only whipped whites, pinch of salt, and some sugar, and the texture and moisture level inside the souffle turned out perfectly. So I'm guess that it's my folding that's messing with the results. But one thing is that after I pulled the souffle out of the oven, the center sank almost as much as it rose, is it supposed to do that?
     
  5. prettycake

    prettycake Banned

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    I use a scraper ( white flat kind)  or a slotted big kitchen spoon.
     
  6. siduri

    siduri

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    It's not so much the tool you use, in my opinion, but the technique

    Julia Child explained it well - go in with your spatula, spoon, or (her preference) hand, right into the center, scrape along the bottom of the bowl towards you, and up the side, dumping the batter on top of the flour or whatever you're folding in (egg whites, egg whites and flour, etc).  Turn the bowl 1/8 of a turn and do it again, into the center, down and up the sides, turning the tool so the batter you;ve scraped up goes on top, and turn again, etc all the way around till you don't find any spots of dry flour. 
     
  7. colin

    colin

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    Ditto Siduri.  Any large thin/flat spatula.  I use a rubber one.  You're moving in gentle curving strokes, bottom to top, raising the denser batter over the egg foam.  As Jelly says, mixing a little of the egg white into the denser batter first will make it fold better.  I stop folding at about 90% mixed: going for 100% will deflate too much, and a few flecks of pure egg white in the final product just add character.
     
  8. agp423

    agp423

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    When folding, do you go around the whipped whites? Or do you cut the whipped whites in half with every fold?
     
  9. siduri

    siduri

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    Cut them in half, right through the center, every time, because the stuff underneath them that needs to be mixed is usually in the center under the pile of whites.  I used to go around the edge, but then there would be a blob of whatever it is in the center. 

    If you have, say, beaten yolks and you fold in whites and flour, you add a little beaten whites to the yolks, and just stir, to make it less thick and easier to fold.  Then put 1/3 of the remaining beaten whites on top, and sift 1/3 of the flour on them, and fold that together.  Then add half the remaining whites and flour, fold, then the rest.  This way you don;t have to deflate anything so much

    Also very useful, if it';s a desert and they say to beat the yolks with sugar, and then beat the whites till stiff, reserve a couple of tbsps (even half) the sugar when you do the yolks and beat it into the whites.  That seems to stabilize them, esp if you leave them a bit before folding. 
     
  10. prettycake

    prettycake Banned

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    Not sure how many ways or techniques there are in folding ?   when I fold the egg whites and the Almond flour mixture when making Macarons,  I make sure to go at the very bottom and center part where dry ingedients can hide then bring them up.  But if it the finish product is the problem, then most likely it is the oven and not the folding part of it...  JMHO
     
  11. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    I guess I've been doing it wrong for years, my souffles are generally crispy on the top and creamy in the middle, oh well...
     
  12. agp423

    agp423

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    I got the folding part down. Now my souffles puff up after being in the oven, but they immediately deflate after I take them out. I tried keeping them in the oven for longer before taking them out, but anything more than 14 minutes, the souffles start to deflate in the oven. What am I doing wrong that is preventing the souffles from staying puffed after being pulled out of the oven?
     
  13. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    In my experience, ALL souffles begin to deflate when removed from the oven! The key is finding the right combination of ingredients to slow the deflation enough to get the souffle to the table.

    Most times this requires adjusting the starch content of the base.

    What is the recipe you are using? Ingredients and a description of your technique would be helpful.
     
  14. colin

    colin

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    Yep -- they can't help deflate at least a bit as the colder air hits them. 

    A smaller diameter dish may help a little - higher ratio of cooked outer crust to sinky middle.  

    I'd also endorse Pete's earlier note re moist/creamy inside being good.  You don't want it undercooked, but too long in the oven and it can get unappetizingly dry.
     
  15. petalsandcoco

    petalsandcoco

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    "Yep -- they can't help deflate at least a bit as the colder air hits them."

    Oh so true Colin. A souffle waits for no one.
     
  16. siduri

    siduri

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    Yeah, i agree, I like souffle to be creamy inside and a souffle that stays up will probably stay up because it's a dry souffle.  You have to have the guests wait rather than count on it staying up. 
     
  17. agp423

    agp423

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    Got it. For my chocolate souffles, I usually do 3 egg whites per 2 7oz ramekins. I first melt about 3 oz of chocolate (because I don't like them too sweet or too chocolaty), mix, let it cool slightly, add 1 egg yolk, mix. And as of the egg whites, I add a pinch of salt, beat till soft peak, then sprinkle enough sugar to barely cover the surface, then beat till stiff peak.