Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Easy Meal Ideas for Busy Holiday Evenings

Tonight-mini cheese souffles. I served these with herbed rice, and spinach. The whole dinner was ready in about 45 minutes. Only about 15 minutes being active prep time. I have better things to do than cook for my family...wait...oh hell, you know what I mean.

Use 4 large, or 6 regular sized ramekins. I've had this recipe copied down in a notebook for years. I no longer recall where I found it, but it has been in regular rotation at our house for some time now. This is one you'll want to copy down and keep as well. At least I think you will.

You Will Need:

1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon plain flour
2 large egg yolks, room temp.
1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan plus extra for ramekins
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Pinch nutmeg
Pinch pepper
4 large egg whites, room temp
Pinch cream of tartar
3/4 cup lightly packed grated cheese (I used Swiss and cheddar)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter the ramekins well. Coat lightly with parsemasan, then place on a baking sheet and chill until needed.

Heat the milk and thyme until steaming. In another pan, melt the butter. Add the flour and cook over medium heat until it begins to foam. Whisk in the warm milk and continue cooking until it thickens-about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and cool slightly before beating in egg yolks, remaining Parmesan, nutmeg and salt/pepper.

Beat the egg whites with a pinch of cream of tartar until stiff. Fold 1/4 of it into the souffle base. Fold in remaining egg whites, then toss cheese on top and fold it all together. Pour into ramekins and bake 30 minutes until puffed and golden. Serve immediately.

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