I have a stack of food magazines that I’ve gathered over the years, a pretty decent collection of Cooks Illustrated, Cook’s Country, Gourmet, Saveur, and Bon Appetit. I love looking through them, even repeatedly, but I don’t end up actually making anything from them very often. But every now and then I make some kind of resolve to cook from a magazine once a week. Dust them off, put them to use!
Trying this soufflé was a happy result of one such resolution. I don’t think I would’ve thought to try a soufflé if I hadn’t been searching through this one particular magazine for a recipe I could fit into that week’s menu with the ingredients I had on hand. I think in my mind I had relegated soufflé to stuffy dinner parties or French restaurants, not weekday meals. Turns out, soufflé is simple enough for a weekday meal AND tasty enough to be gobbled down by kids and adults alike. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, given the main ingredients of egg and cheese.
Seriously, this soufflé is delicious. Light as air but so flavorful. My kids go nuts over it. I always serve it with a crusty bread, vegetables, and a fresh salad. It's a light but immensely satisfying dinner.
simple cheese soufflé
From the Jan/Feb 2014 Cook's Illustrated Magazine, No 126
- 1 oz Parmesan, shredded
- 1/4 cup 1(1.25 oz) all purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1/8 tsp cayenne
- 1/2 tsp dried parsley
- 4 Tbsp (2 oz) butter
- 1 1/2 cups (12 oz) milk
- 6 oz Gruyere, shredded
- 6 eggs, separated
- 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
- Preheat oven to 350. Grease an 8 cup (2 qt) soufflé dish. Sprinkle with a quarter(about 2 Tbsp) of the Parmesan.
- Combine flour, paprika, salt, pepper, cayenne, and parsley in a small bowl. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour mixture and stir for about a minute. Slowly whisk in milk, stirring until uniform and smooth. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring constantly, for a minute until thickened. Remove from heat and stir in Gruyere and all but one Tbsp of the remaining Parmesan until melted and smooth. Let sit to cool for a bit, and then whisk in egg yolks.
- In a bowl of an electric mixture, whisk egg whites and cream of tartar on medium slow until frothy. Increase speed to high and whisk until stiff peaks form, about 3 minutes. Pour in cheese mixture and beat briefly until combined and smooth.
- Pour mixture into prepared dish. Don't fill it too much or you'll have overflow - you want the batter to come to about an inch below the top of the dish. Sprinkle that last tablespoon of Parmesan over the top. Bake 30-35 minutes or until set an golden brown and an instant thermometer reads 170. Serve immediately.
- I rarely if ever have Gruyere on hand, but I have used cheddar and Gouda with great success.
- This always makes much too much batter for my soufflé dish. The magazine instructs you to just toss it but that offends the frugal saver in me. Instead I grease some ramekins and pour the remaining batter into those. They bake much quicker - maybe 20 minutes? Just keep an eye on them. Last time I got four extra ramekins and I can tell you the kids were thrilled about having their own personal soufflés.
- Apparently if you don't have your timing quite right and your soufflé has to sit a bit before dinner and becomes a sad deflated version of itself (and don't worry, you didn't do anything wrong, all soufflés deflate!) just a few minutes back in a 350 oven should spring it right back up.