Cheese Soufflé Recipe
1 small onion, peeled, cut into wedges
285 ml full milk, plus extra for topping up if needed
1 bay leaf
50 g butter, plus extra for greasing
50 g “00” flour
100 g boerenkaas, coarsely grated
30 g Dijon mustard
freshly grated nutmeg, to taste
salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 eggs, separated
5 g chopped chives, plus extra for garnish
For the second baking:
50 g Gruyere, finely grated
50 g boerenkaas, grated
360 ml cream
Preheat the oven to 200 °C. Butter 6 soufflé ramekins and line the bases with a round of parchment paper. Place on a baking tray.
Bring the milk, onion and bay leaves to a gentle simmer over a low heat and cook for 8 to minutes to infuse. Be careful not to boil over. Remove from the heat and rest for 5min.
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over a low heat. Remove from the heat and stir in the flour with a wooden spoon. Once combined, return to the heat and cook for a minute, stirring as it cooks and begins to bubble. Remove from the heat.
Strain the milk through a sieve into a pouring jug and discard the onion and bay leaf. You’ll need 250ml of this milk infusion.
Stir the milk into the flour and butter paste, then return to the heat and cook for 5 minutes, bringing to the boil, stirring constantly. The sauce will become smooth and thick. Add the Cheese, mustard and a little nutmeg and continue to cook for a further minute or so just to melt the cheese.
Season to taste and add the chives. Pour the cheese sauce to a glass bowl and rest for a few minutes.
Once the mixture has cooled, beat in the egg yolks one at a time until well incorporated.
Whisk the egg whites in a bowl until stiff peaks form. Fold about 1/4 of the egg whites into the cheese mixture with a large metal spoon, this initial mix will loosen your mixture making the rest of the folding easier. Then gently fold in the remaining egg whites to preserve the volume you have created. I use a curved spatula for this job.
Spoon the soufflé mixture into the ramekins until it reaches the top. Scrape the top flat with a pallet knife and using the tip of your thumb just lightly clean the sides of the ramekin as you would for a souffle. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown on top. Once cooked, remove the tray from the oven and leave the soufflés to cool in their ramekins.
When the soufflés are cold, line a baking tray with parchment paper and loosen the souffle from the ramekin using a small pallet knife. Turn the soufflés out onto your hand being careful not to break them. remove the parchment paper from the bottom of the souffle. Place on the tray upside down. The soufflés can now be covered with cling film and chilled for up to 24 hours before being baked again.
For the second baking, preheat the oven to 200 °C. Fifteen minutes before serving, remove the cling film from the soufflés, and sprinkle with the grated gruyere or cheddar. Spoon a tablespoon or two of double cream over each soufflé, allowing it to run down the sides. Bake for 10 minutes until the soufflés are hot and the cheese topping has melted. Serve immediately, sprinkled with chopped chives and a crispy cos lettuce salad.