This month, Kitchen Chick has set us a challenge...to make a souffle! In the classic dishes yearbook, I think the souffle traditionally wins the title "Most likely to collapse and ruin your nice dinner party" so it is a dish many cooks fear to make. I for one can't even remember if I have ever eaten a souffle. But the idea of a delicate concoction of eggs and cheese, puffy and golden to be savoured right after it comes out of the oven...so tempting, right?
First things first: sweet or savoury? I will take savoury every time. Next issue: choosing a recipe. I found a whole bunch of recipes on BBC food that I liked. But again, I don't own a souffle dish or ramekins. It was a choice between running to Bed, Bath and Beyond to buy a souffle dish, or making do with a shallow gratin dish. Then I came upon this recipe on BBC food that calls for baking the souffle in a hollow bread loaf! Perfect: an edible souffle dish. I modified the recipe to include mushrooms and spinach, because I love the combination of mushrooms, spinach and cheese; and also to get some vegetables in.
Bread Bowl Souffle
1 country loaf (I used a country white boule from Balthazar)
1 small Boursin cheese with garlic and herbs
2 eggs, separated
1 cup chopped cremini mushrooms
1/2 bunch fresh spinach
1 tbsp butter
freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
2. Hollow out the loaf of bread. Save the hollowed-out bits for another use.
3. Rinse the spinach and place this wet spinach in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 2 minutes. Press out all the water and chop the spinach.
4. In a skillet, heat the butter and saute the spinach and mushrooms for 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
5. In a bowl, break up the cheese into little bits. Add the mushroom-spinach mixture and the egg yolks and mix well.
6. Beat the egg whites to soft peak.
7. Gently fold whites into the cheese-egg yolk-vegetable mixture.
8. Pour the mixture into the hollowed loaf.
9. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes until the soufflé is cooked.
The verdict: We loved it! I still have no idea if the souffle rose as much as it could have. It was puffy but not outrageously so :) The souffle never deflated which makes me think it did not rise too well to begin with. The baking toasted the bread, while the mixture inside was creamy, fluffy and delicious. The combination was so good together. I will make this dish again and again! Next time I might add some nutmeg for the extra flavor. Thanks Kitchen Chick, you really made me expand my culinary horizons!
Tagged with: IMBB # 20 + Souffle