Blue cheese soufflés

Blue cheese soufflés

By
From
Cut the Carbs!
Serves
4

There is some unnecessary stigma surrounding soufflés. If you can make a white sauce and whip an egg white, you can make one. Sure there are some tips to ease the way – using room-temperature eggs will give a better rise, as will cooling the cheesy béchamel before you fold in the stiff whites. I tend to get the best results when I cook them on the lowest shelf of the oven (and then take them straight to the table, though don’t fret too much, as it’s in their nature to slouch when you serve them – a rumpled crown is part of the appeal). As light as the air is in these, the blue cheese makes them rather plush. Placing some plumes of radicchio on the side helps with cut-through, providing both a bitter contrast and an excellent device for dunking. I find one small portion of the soufflés is sufficient; any more can feel more onerous than indulgent. To round out the meal try serving them with the Chickpeas, Leek, Apple and Pear Salad for additional crunch and contrast.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
40g butter, plus extra for greasing
2 tablespoons ground almonds or hazelnuts
40g chickpea flour
225ml milk
150g blue cheese
1/2 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
4 egg whites
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
radicchio leaves, to serve

Equipment

Quantity Ingredient
4 x 250ml ramekins or small copper pots

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180˚C.
  2. Lightly grease the ramekins or copper pots with butter. Pour the ground nuts into the base of one and shake it to coat the sides with the nuts, then pour the excess into the next ramekin or pot and repeat until they have all been dusted.
  3. Place a saucepan over medium heat. Add the butter and leave it to melt, then add the flour and stir it to create a paste. Cook the paste for 2 minutes, or until it has turned a light brown.
  4. Gradually pour in the milk, whisking it with a balloon whisk until it thickens to a gloopy white sauce like béchamel. Add the cheese and thyme and stir until the cheese has melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove the pan from the heat, season the mixture with salt and pepper and allow it to cool for at least 5 minutes.
  5. In a clean bowl, use an electric whisk to beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until soft peaks form. Fold the egg whites into the cheese mixture in 3 batches, trying not to knock too much air out, until everything is just combined.
  6. Portion the soufflé batter into the prepared ramekins or pots, filling them just three-quarters full, and place them on a baking tray on the bottom shelf of the preheated oven. Bake them for 25 minutes until puffed up and golden brown.
  7. Serve the soufflés immediately with radicchio leaves for dipping, and potentially the Chickpeas, Leek, Apple and Pear Salad.

Tip:

  • You could easily substitute the blue cheese for crumbled goats’ cheese or gratings of a good English Cheddar. If you’re looking for a way to use up your leftover egg yolks, try the passionfruit curd, perhaps substituting the zest and juice of a clementine to give it a wintry twist. The curd is lovely layered with yoghurt as a light dessert.
Tags:
healthy
low carb
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