Friday, January 15, 2010

Jan 15th - Spinach and Goat Cheese Soufflee

Spinach and Goat Cheese Soufflee
  • Soft but not melted butter, for the soufflee dish
  • 500 g leaf spinach, washed and trimmed
  • 1/4 c butter
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 c all purpose flour
  • 1/4 t cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 t freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 c low fat milk milk
  • 200g soft goat cheese
  • 1/8 c freshly grated parmesan
  • 2 tbsp finely grated Parmesan
  • 5 large eggs, separated, one by one so you keep the whites safe from yolks
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Truffle oil to taste
Butter a 7-9" souffle dish. Most attention to the sides. Chill and then apply another layer. I use the wrapper the butter came in. You can use a brush or a piece of wax paper to smear the butter. Set aside in the fridge.

Preheat the oven to 400F

Wash the spinach thoroughly but emersing in water and draining a couple of times. Drain but don't spin. Heat a large non stick pan and place the leaves in manageable bunches into the hotpan and let wilt. If there isn't enough water on the leaves add a splash. Wilt all the leaves until soft. Season with salt and pepper. Move around alot with the heat lower until there is no water left in the pan. If you think the leaves are still too moist, squeeze through a clean dish cloth. Chop and set aside to cool.

Melt the butter in the emptied pan. Sautee the shallots and garlic with cayenne on medium high heat for a few minutes. Don't brown the garlic. Sprinkle the flour over the pan and mix with a whisk or wooden spoon for a few minutes until looks like a paste. Turn the heat down to medium. Pour in milk slowly while stirring. Mix until thickened. It will happen fast. Take of heat and place in a large mixing bowl. Stir to cool slightly.

Add the egg yolks. Mix. Add the nutmeg and parmesan. Mix. Add the goat cheese breaking into small pieces with a knife or fingers. Mix thoroughly. Set aside.

Beat the whites with a hand mixer or stand mixer until stiff peaks. That means if you lift the beater, you get a elf hat standing up on the whisk. If it is floppy or watery keep beating on high. Don't over beat to a point they become dry. This looks like 'broken' butter or whey. When you try to lift the whisky, it may not cling to the whisk at all and look crumbly. It's not the worst but don't over beat.

Take a big scoop of the whites and mix into the cheese and yolk mixture to lighten up. Then add the rest and gently fold by carefully turning the batter from the middle with a large rubber spatula or wooden spoon. Only fold to combine but it's okay if you still see some whites. Better that then over mix and deflate all the whites.

Pour into the baking dish. Try to avoid spilling onto the edges. Wipe drips so that the soufflee can rise. Then take a sharp small knife and run along the edge of the batter.

Place on the rack in the middle of the oven. Bake for 40 minutes. If it starts to brown too much cover with foil. You can check at 30 minutes by jiggling it. If it moves too much, leave it for 5-10 minutes more. If you don't know what 'too jiggly' means, check with a spoon in the middle. Slightly runny is okay but if it looks too foamy or watery put back.

It was super tasty. The goat cheese and spinach was a great combination. If you do several in smaller ramekins, you can cut the time almost in half.

This could serve four as an appetizer. We had the whole thing with nothing else.


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