We’re Cooking: Blue Cheese Souffle

souffle

Per the request of my sweet friend Ashlee, a perfect blue cheese souffle recipe. This was the perfect start to our Christmas Eve dinner, paired with a stellar bottle of 2007 Etude Deer Camp Pinot Noir, it definitely got us into the holiday spirit. We did individual souffles (approximately 1 egg per ramekin) but you can also make one large souffle with the same recipe.

Blue Cheese Souffle
Ingredients:
1 stick + 1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup flour
1 cup milk
6 ounces blue cheese
1/2 cup + 2-3 tablespoons for dusting parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon chile flakes
1 garlic clove – peeled and sliced in half
5 egg yolks
6 egg whites
1/3 teaspoon Cream of Tartar

Preparation:
Pre-heat the oven to 400.  Butter and dust the souffle dishes/ramekins with parmesan cheese and set aside.  Heat the milk over low heat with the chile flakes and garlic.  In a heavy bottomed sauce pot melt the butter and whisk in the flour to make a rue, stirring constantly to avoid lumps.  Strain the warm milk and whisk it into the rue.  Add in the pepper and nutmeg.  You can add a bit of salt, but the cheese is salty so use a light touch.  Add the blue cheese and parmesan cheese.  Stir until melted.  Remove from heat.  Divide the eggs, yolks into a bowl and whites into a mixer.  After all are divided add the Cream of Tartar to the egg whites and turn the mixer on to a medium speed.  Add the egg yolks one at a time to the milk, butter and flour, stirring to ensure they will not scramble.  Check the whites, as soon as they have formed stiff peaks and look like fluffy clouds stop mixing.  Slowly fold the cheese mixture into the egg whites.  Make sure they are fully incorporated, but be careful not to overly deflate your egg whites.  Scoop the mixture into the baking dishes and place on a baking sheet (in case they overflow.)  Run your finger around the rim of each dish to help ensure an even souffle top.  Place in the oven and reduce the heat to 375.  Bake for about 30 minutes (check on them though…several small, individual souffles cook a bit faster than one large souffle.)  Remove as soon as the tops are brown and the souffle has puffed.  Serve immediately.

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