Cheese and spinach soufflé

cheese and spinach soufflé

cheese and spinach soufflé

Boy, am I glad Candida is back!!! The pressure has been taken off me at long last…;-)

This is definitely not a vegan recipe as it has cheese, milk and eggs in it, but hey! the days of cooking vegan are over for the time being. I’ve made this soufflé at least three times, combining various recipes from different sources. I can honestly say it has worked every single time. It has puffed right up and was cooked to perfection. Really quite spectacular!  People are scared of souffles and think they are ever so difficult to make but I beg to differ and would like to reassure you. I reckon that provided you get the right balance of ingredients, souffles are not more complicated than any other dish. Last time I made it I divided the mixture into 8 small ramekins instead of making a big one. That was also successful. So here it is. Follow the recipe and have a go. You”ll see for yourself how easy it is. Of course do bear in mind that souffles have to be eaten straight out of the oven or they will collapse so you need to get the timing right.  If you do I guarantee you will impress your friends! 😉

INGREDIENTS

  • 70 g butter
  • 70 g plain flour
  • 400 ml milk
  • 120 g grated gruyere cheese
  • 4 large free-range eggs, separated 
  • 250 g spinach, steamed
  • salt
  • pinch of grated nutmeg

METHOD

Preheat the oven to 200C.

Steam the spinach leaves in boiling water for two minutes, and drain through a fine sieve, squeezing every last drop of water from the spinach. Chop the spinach, but not too finely. Put the milk in a pan to warm. Melt the butter in a saucepan and stir in the flour to make a roux. (I confess I did my bechamel sauce using the microwave but I’m giving you the traditional method here).

When it is smooth, gradually add the warm milk, whisking hard until you get a silky, thick sauce. Take off the heat, add the grated cheese and allow to melt. Put in a mixing bowl and add the egg yolks, chopped spinach and seasoning to taste. Allow to cool.

Whisk the egg whites until they form nice stiff peaks. Using a metal spoon, carefully fold the egg whites into the spinach-and-cheese mixture one spoon at a time, taking care not to lose all the air you have whisked into them. Spoon the mixture into a well greased soufflé dish (I placed a strip of greaseproof paper at the top of the dish so that the soufflé didn’t overflow as it puffed  up- see picture below), then sprinkle a bit of extra cheese over the top. I used a bit of grated parmesan.

Place in the preheated oven and cook for 45-50 minutes, until golden and risen. The soufflé should be nicely risen, soft and moist on the inside and just starting to crack on the surface. Serve immediately.

If you decide to divide the mixture between 8 ramekins cook for 25-30 minutes instead.

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