A soufflé can be sweet, it can be a main course, it can contain vegetables, meat, or fish. Soufflés lend themselves well to nearly every palate.
One thing they tend to have in common is that they should be light and airy. Fluffy is a word often used to describe soufflés. To maximize on things in the light and airy department, take care when beating your egg whites. This is one of those times that it pays off to be scrupulously careful. Some chefs routinely use copper bowls to beat their in, because the copper helps in some cryptic way with the lightness. Other chefs routinely add a pinch of cream of tartar to their eggs for the same reason.
When it comes time to fold the beaten egg whites into the other ingredients, be very gentle. The point is to retain those zillions of tiny air bubbles inside the egg whites in order to elevate the soufflé.
This souffle makes chanterelles light as the breath of Spring!
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and grease a 2-quart soufflé dish.
Use a large skillet to melt the butter over medium heat.
Cook the chanterelles in the melted butter, stirring frequently, until the moisture is evaporated. This should take about 15 minutes.
Whisk the flour into the mixture gradually, stirring constantly, then blend in the half-and-half and the wine.
Stir in the tarragon, salt and pepper. Cook over moderate heat until thick. This will take about three minutes.
Stir about 1/2 cup of the hot mixture into the egg yolks, then return to the pan and stir to blend. Remove from the heat and cool.
Beat the egg whites to stiff peaks. When thoroughly beaten, fold half of the egg whites very gently into the mushroom mixture. Fold in the balance of the whites, again taking great care to be gentle.
Pour the mixture into the prepared soufflé dish and bake for 35 to 40 minutes. The soufflé should be golden brown.