Simple cheese soufflé
- April 2011
- Serves 6
- Hands on time 25 mins, plus 35-40 mins cooking time
This classic cheese soufflé recipe is fabulous served with a watercress salad scattered with a few toasted walnuts.
- 31.3g (17.1g saturated)
- 11.4g (5.6g sugars)
- 1 small onion, halved
- 6 cloves
- 600ml whole milk
- 3 fresh bay leaves
- ½ tsp black peppercorns
- 75g butter, plus extra for greasing
- 40g plain flour
- 5 large free-range eggs
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 175g coarsely grated Gruyère
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- ¾ tsp salt
- 25g finely grated Parmesan
- Stud the onion halves with the cloves and put in a non-stick pan with the milk, bay leaves and peppercorns. Bring to the boil, then remove from the heat and set aside for 20 minutes to allow the flavours to infuse. Strain through a sieve into a jug and wash out the pan.
- Position the top shelf in the middle of the oven and preheat to 200°C/fan180°C/gas 6. Lightly grease a shallow 2.25 litre, 5cm deep ovenproof dish. Melt the butter in the cleaned pan, stir in the flour and cook over a low heat for 1 minute. Gradually beat in the infused milk, return to a medium heat and cook, stirring all the time, until it comes to the boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring often. Pour into a bowl and leave to cool slightly.
- Separate the eggs, dropping the whites into another large bowl. Stir the yolks into the milk sauce with the mustard, Gruyère, cayenne pepper, salt and some black pepper.
- Whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks (meaning the tips of the peaks flop over when you remove the whisk). Take care not to get them too dry. Slide them onto the top of the other mixture and gently fold in using a metal spoon. Pour into the buttered dish and scatter with the Parmesan. Bake on the top shelf of the oven for 30 minutes until puffed up and golden. Serve immediately.
Gruyère, Beaufort, Comté and cheddar work best in this recipe, but a hard goat’s cheese such as Village Green, or a Pecorino or blue cheese would also be perfect.
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