‘I turn to Stephanie’s encyclopedia for recipe ideas at least once a month. This soufflé is a brilliant little dish that you can cook in advance and then bake a second time just before you sit down for dinner. It’s very similar to a soufflé I had to make for Michel Roux Jr during the finals of Masterchef, so it brings back memories for me. As Michel does, I choose to cook this with triple (yes, triple) the amount of cream that Stephanie uses, which I season generously with salt and pepper and simmer to reduce by half. The result is a nutty, rich sauce that silkily envelopes the soufflés and will render your guests speechless. Serve with a simple green salad to disguise its wanton nature’

Thomasina Miers

Twice-baked goat’s cheese soufflés

Extract from Stephanie Alexander’s

The Cook’s Companion: The Complete Book of Ingredients and Recipes for the Australian Kitchen

Published by Penguin

These soufflés are not served in their dishes, so it is possible to use aluminium moulds or even teacups of about 150ml capacity.

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

80g butter
60g plain flour
350ml warm milk
75g fresh goat’s cheese
1 tablespoon freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons freshly chopped parsley, or parsley and other herbs
4 eggs, separated

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper
2 cups cream

Method

Preheat oven to 180˚C. Melt 20g of the butter and grease 6-8 150ml soufflé dishes with it. Melt remaining butter in a small heavy-based saucepan. Stir in the flour and cook over moderate heat, stirring, for 2 minutes. Gradually add milk, stirring all the while. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

Mash goat’s cheese until soft and add to hot sauce with Parmesan and parsley. Allow to cool for a few minutes. Fold 3 egg yolks in thoroughly and taste for seasoning (save remaining yolk for another use). Beat egg whites until creamy, then fold quickly and lightly into cheese mixture. Divide mixture between prepared moulds and smooth surface of each.

Stand moulds in a baking dish lined with a tea towel and pour in boiling water to come two-thirds up their sides. Bake for about 20 minutes until firm to touch and well puffed. Remove soufflés from oven-they will deflate and look wrinkled. Allow to rest for 1-2 minutes, then gently ease out of moulds. Invert onto a plate covered with plastic film and leave until needed.

To serve, preheat oven to 180˚C. Place soufflés upside down in a buttered ovenproof gratin dish, so that they’re not touching. Pour over cream (1⁄3 cup per soufflé) to moisten them thoroughly. Return to the oven for 15 minutes. The soufflés will look swollen and golden. Spoon some cream from baking dish around to serve, or serve with fresh tomato sauce or a small green salad.

Blue-cheese soufflés: Substitute the same weight of creamy blue cheese for the goat’s cheese.

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