I can soufflé, can you?
I am bringing the “year of making” to as many aspects of my life as I possibly can, and one very easy way for me to do this is through the meals I make. With some very simple ingredients – farm fresh eggs, milk, cheese, and some diced ham, you can have a very elegant but entirely satisfying dinner. I have based my recipe on Hubert Keller’s recipe for the same. Ham and Cheese Soufflé
Now, on to the recipe!
Ham and Cheese Soufflé
- 6 Tbsp unsalted butter
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 ¼ cup whole milk, chilled
- 5 egg yolks
- ½ pound Emmental Cheese (or Gruyère Cheese) – grated
- ½ cup diced ham
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- ¼ tsp grated nutmeg
- Pinch of Cayenne pepper
- 10 egg whites
- Pinch of Cream of Tartar
For the Soufflé dish – 1 Tbsp unsalted butter and 1/4 cup all-purpose flour. Butter the dish (I used ramekins as my soufflé dish was a casualty of the move) generously and coat the butter with a dusting of flour. Tap out any excess flour and set aside.
Pre-heat the oven to 400º F.
In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
Whisk in the flour and stir for approximately five minutes to make a roux.
Add the milk slowly, continuously whisking until the mixture is very smooth. Do not worry if there are some lumps at this point, as you continue to whisk they will disappear. Add the nutmeg and the Cayenne at this point and continue whisking over medium-high heat and cook until the mixture comes to a boil and keep cooking for another 4-5 minutes until the mixture gets very thick and smooth. You are not looking for a rolling boil, but rather bubbles at the bottom of the pan as the mixture thickens.
Remove from the heat and whisk in the egg yolks one at a time until they are fully incorporated.
Using a wooden incorporate the grated cheese into the Béchamel sauce, stirring until the cheese is melted. Add the chopped ham and season with salt and pepper.
Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl and set aside.
In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites and the pinch of Cream of Tartar with an electric mixer on medium high speed to soft peaks.
Using a rubber spatula, transfer approximately ¼ of the egg whites into the soufflé mixture and stir until fully combined. You do not need to fold the egg whites in at this point; you are just lightening your Béchamel mixture a bit.
Add half of the remaining egg whites and fold gently together until mixture is smooth. Gently fold in the remaining egg whites, being careful to keep the airiness and lightness of the mixture.
Spoon the mixture into your prepared soufflé dishes. Once you have them all filled run your thumb around the edge of the dishes – this will help your soufflé rise nicely.
Bake 40 minutes or until soufflé raises and is golden brown. Serve immediately.
I served them with a tossed salad for a truly delicious meal.