Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Cheddar and Spinach Souffle

To pair with our French Bistro theme in my kitchen tonight, I chose a souffle that I've had on retainer from Giada deLaurentiis. This was featured on the episode of Todd's Midwestern Favorites, it stuck in my mind because her husband is from Wisconsin, where my little cheese-head of a boyfriend grew up so I made a mental note that this could have potential. I'll be honest, attempting souffle made me nervous. What if it didn't rise? What if it wasn't good? What if I burned it trying to make it rise so it would be good? I went out and bought a simple 2 quart souffle dish from World Market and set out to make my first souffle.

This souffle is plenty filling for manly men, yet light at the same time for us little ladies. It was great with the french onion soup! I included chopped rotisserie chicken but you can dismiss it.

Being terrified to mess it up, I kept to the directions but here is what I would do differently. I would chop up the baby spinach into smaller bits to help get more in the souffle. I would also be interested in experimenting with less egg - I know a souffle is mostly egg but I'm just curious... I will also make them in individual souffle cups next time! You can get them at World Market for only $3.99!

Grocery List:
  • 1/2 stick of butter at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cup of milk at room temperature (Giada used whole milk, I used low fat 1% milk)
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups mild cheddar
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
  • 2 packed cups baby spinach leaves
  • 1 store bought Rotisserie chicken, breast meat only, skinned and cut into 1/2 inch cubes (about 2 cups)
  • 6 egg yolks at room temperature
  • 2 (1/2 inch) thick pieces of country-style white bread, crusts removed, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 6 egg whites at room temperature
In a medium saucepan, heat the butter over medium-low heat. Add the flour stirring constantly for 2 minutes. Slowly whisk in the milk until mixture is smooth and creamy. Bring to a simmer and let cook for about 8-10 minutes.

Stir in the nutmeg and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Remove the pan from heat and add the chicken, spinach, cheese, egg yolks and bread cubes. Make sure it is off the heat so the egg yolks don't begin to cook in the mixture. Stir until combined, it will be very thick.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites at a high speed for about two minutes.

Ok, another reason why I love this new camera, this was while the electric beaters were on speed 8 TURBO, and it still was able to capture this. LOVE.

Stir 1/4 of the egg whites in with the chicken mixture, then fold in the rest. This took a while to do, be patient and continue to fold it in until it is well combined.

Coat the sides and bottom of a 2 quart (8 cup) souffle dish and then spoon the mixture into it. Bake on 400 degrees until the souffle is puffed and the top is firm and golden, for my oven that was about 45 minutes.

...but mine got slightly browned due to my cheap apartment oven... this is the good side.

and this is the little too browned side...but not burned and tasted great!

Remove and serve immediately.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, that looks amazing! I will have to try this one. My husband loves spinach and cheese. I may have to puree mine to get my 3-year old to eat it but I will definitely add it to a future meal plan of mine. Thanks!


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