Cheese and Herb Souffle
This one’s a winner – as delicate and delicious as any souffle, this one has virtually no carbohydrates at all. Your friends and family will love it too. Just be ready to eat right away, and enjoy…..
Recipe by: Arlene Jacobs
2 cups whole milk ricotta cheese
2 tbsps. finely grated Parmesan cheese for coating the dish
4 egg yolks
6 egg whites
1 tbsp. each roughly chopped tarragon, chives or scallion greens, and Italian flat leaf parsley
¼ tsp. nutmeg
¼ tsp. salt
1 cup coarsely grated Gruyere, Emmenthal or sharp Cheddar cheese
- On the day before baking, drain about 3 cups of the ricotta cheese in a strainer placed over a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in the fridge until ready to use, pouring off the liquid several times.
- Preheat the oven to 400 o F. Place oven rack on the lower third of the oven. Prepare the soufflé dish by rubbing the bottom and sides with about 1 tsp. butter and sprinkling with 2 tbsps. of the Parmesan.
- In a food processor combine 2 cups of the drained ricotta, the yolks, tarragon, chives and parsley with the 4 tbsps. Parmesan. Add the nutmeg, cayenne and salt and process until combined. Transfer to a large bowl.
- In a large bowl using a whisk or in your mixer, whip the egg whites until soft peaks form.
- Sprinkle 1/3 of the grated cheese on top of the egg yolk mixture, add 1/3 of the whites and stir gently with your whisk to loosen the mixture. Add 1/3 more of the grated cheese, another 1/3 of the whites and this time using a rubber spatula fold in gently. Repeat once more until all the cheese and whites are incorporated.
- Carefully pour the soufflé mix into the dish and place on a rack in the lower third of your oven.
Immediately lower the heat to 375 o F. Bake for 30 – 35 minutes until soufflé is set. (It should be soft in the center.) Serve immediately.
- Don’t be concerned if the soufflé is wiggly – its O.K. if it’s softer in the center.
- Be careful not to over-whip the whites so they become dry and hard to incorporate. They should be shiny and form a hook shape on your whisk when it is inverted.
- Souffles don’t have the structure to hold up like cakes. They will fall soon after being removed from the oven, so be prepared to serve them as soon as you can.
- The reason we sprinkle the Parmesan on the sides of the soufflé dish is that the mixture needs something to “grab” on and hold it as it rises.
- To fold, run a rubber spatula along the side of the bowl, then under and gently flip the mixture to the center of the bowl, while constantly turning the bowl with your other hand. Continue until ingredients are almost combined. Don’t over mix because this will deflate the soufflé.
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