Recipes
Goat Cheese Soufflé with Thyme

Of all soufflés, this is my favorite. The enticing aroma of goat cheese is very seductive, and the little pockets of melted cheese are found treasures. Although a classic soufflé dish forms a high, puffed crown, I often bake this and other soufflés in a large shallow gratin dish instead. It still looks marvelous, it bakes more quickly, and this way there's plenty of crust for everyone.

Ingredients
 butter, for the dish
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan, for the dish
1 1/4 cups milk or cream
1  {bay leaf}, for aromatics
 several thyme sprigs, for aromatics
2  thin onion slices, for aromatics
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
 salt
 freshly milled {pepper}
 pinch {cayenne}
4  egg yolks
1 cup (about 4 ounces) crumbled goat cheese, preferably a Bucheron or other strong-flavored cheese
6  egg whites
 several plump thyme sprigs, leaves only
Directions
Preheat the oven to 400°. Butter a 6-cup soufflé dish or an 8-cup gratin dish and coat it with the Parmesan. Heat the milk with the aromatics until it boils. Set it aside to steep for 15 minutes, then strain.

Melt the butter in a saucepan. When foamy, stir in the flour and cook over low heat for several minutes. Whisk in the milk all at once and stir vigorously for a minute or so as it thickens, then add 3/4 teaspoon salt, a few twists of pepper, and the cayenne. Remove from heat. Beat in the egg yolks one at a time until well blended, then stir in the cheese. Don't worry about getting it smooth.

Beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until they form firm peaks, then stir a quarter of them into the base to lighten the mixture. Fold in the rest, transfer to the prepared dish, then put in the center of the oven and lower the heat to 375° F. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden and just a bit wobbly in the center. Remove, scatter the thyme over the top, and serve immediately.

Ease of Preparation: Moderate

Preparation Time: 20 min
plus 15 min steeping time

Cook Time: 40 min

Servings: 4

Recipe By: Deborah Madison

From:  Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone
Used with permission of Broadway

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