While searching online for truffle recipes to use as literary inspiration - authors call it 'effective procrastination' - I stumbled across an Australian website called The Truffle Man which featured a simple recipe for truffle souffle. I've written about cultivated Australian truffles before, and The Truffle Man appears to be an online retailer and knowledge source.
The below recipe comes from his site, although I've added a few explanatory notes of my own. Souffles have the reputation of being difficult to cook, which couldn't be further from the truth. They can be hard to do for a dinner party, as the timing isn't easy, but for a simple supper which you eat the moment it's ready? A doddle.
If you're worried about getting the souffle to rise, my daughter has an excellent tip. Butter your souffle dish, and then line with either breadcrumbs or grated parmesan. The textured edges give the souffle something to 'climb'. She uses deep metal cake tins for her souffles, and puts the lined tin into the freezer while she makes the souffle mix (apparently known as a panade). She tells me that she's only ever done it that way - it was a tip in the first recipe she used - so she doesn't know what the freezing does, but she does know that all her souffles rise.
Another tip is to not over-beat the egg whites. If in doubt, medium-stiff peaks are better than over-beaten egg whites. When folding the egg white mixture - and this applies to all recipes that involve folding - use a metal spoon.
50g grated cheese [a Cantal or Tomme would work well]
4 eggs, separated (whites, stiffly whipped with a little salt)
1 tbls crème fraiche
Nutmeg, salt, pepper
1. Prepare a béchamel sauce. [If you have not made one before, melt the butter into a medium saucepan over a medium-low heat. When melted, add the flour and stir until it balls together, forming a roux. Slowly add the milk, stirring or whisking constantly, until it becomes a thick sauce. Taking the pan off the heat while you add the milk helps to avoid lumps. Lumps will form, but with enough stirring they will also disappear, so don't lose heart. There's always a moment where you think you've ruined it, and that's usually seconds before it all comes together. Then add the cheese, and stir until it's melted. I have been known to chuck the cheese in before all the lumps have disappeared. There's something about the melting cheese that takes the last of the lumps with it - I assume it's some sort of chemical reaction.]
2. When [the béchamel] is lukewarm, add egg yolks (one at a time), salt, pepper, grated truffle, cream, nutmeg and grated cheese.
3. Gently, [fold in] the stiffly whipped egg whites.
4. Pour the mixture into a buttered soufflé mould. Cook in a medium warm oven for 25 minutes.
Recipe via www.thetruffleman.com.au, although the text in [square brackets] is my own addition.