Cheese Soufflé Pépin

Serves 4

This comes from Jaques Pepin's autobiography. He tells how his mother knew little about cooking, only that a souffle is made with a white sauce and cheese. This is how she made it, and it's wonderful.

6 tbsp unsalted butter (3/4 stick) plus more to butter a 6-cup dish

6 tbsp all-purpose flour

2 cups cold whole milk

½ tsp salt

½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

6 large eggs

2 ½ cups grated Gruyère cheese (about 6 ounces)

3 tbsp minced fresh chives

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

  1. Butter a 6-cup gratin or soufflé dish and set aside.
  2. Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the flour and mix well with a whisk.
  3. Cook for 30 seconds, add cold milk all at once and mix well with the whisk.
  4. Keep stirring until the mixture thickens and comes to a strong boil, about 2 minutes. Sauce should be thick and smooth.
  5. Remove from the heat, stir in salt and pepper and allow to cool for about 10 minutes.
  6. Break eggs into a bowl and beat well with a fork. Add the cheese and chives.
  7. Add the egg mixture to the cooled sauce. Mix well to combine.
  8. Pour into the gratin dish and cook immediately or set aside until ready to cook.
  9. Bake for 40 minutes or more until puffy and well browned on top. Serve immediately.

Source: "The Apprentice" by Jacques Pépin

Copyright © 2001-2012 by The Still Waters Group

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