Bon Jour! This dish, the Spinach Cheese Souffle, represents like no other dish the French cuisine. The word “souffle” means “breath” in French and it conveys its light and ephemeral elegance. This souffle recipe is from the neighborhood, from Luxembourg. If you never had a souffle you will be surprised how delightful it is. It serves well as a starter dish or can be made as a main course with a mixed green salad aside.
It is good to have a fire proof souffle dish for this recipe. The one I used was a bit too high. The regular souffle dishes are half of the height. Using tarragon adds the little extra to this souffle like no other herb. It is matching very well the taste of spinach.
Ingredients Spinach Cheese Souffle
(makes 4-5 servings)
3 tbsp butter
3 tbsp unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 tsp dried or fresh tarragon
salt, nutmeg to taste (not more than 1/2 tsp of nutmeg)
1 cup milk
5 eggs, separated
1 cup shredded cheese such as cheddar or Swiss cheese
1/2 cup cooked, organic, fresh chopped spinach, about 1 bunch as it is available at the markets
Cooking Instructions Spinach Cheese Souffle
– If needed wash spinach, remove stems, and chop coarsely.
– In a pan melt 1 tsp butter, add spinach, pinch of salt and nutmeg, cook until the leaves are soft.
– Melt butter in a 3 quart pan over medium heat.
– Stir in flour, salt, tarragon and nutmeg; cook until it is bubbly and well combined.
– While stirring pour in milk slowly, cook, stirring until mixture boils briefly and has thickened.
– Add cheese and stir until it is melted.
– Remove from heat, let cool off a little, then add one egg yolk after the other.
– Mix until well blended.
– Add fine chopped spinach, stir. Set aside.
– Beat egg whites with a pinch of salt until it is shiny and firm.
– Fold half of the egg whites into cheese mix; then fold remaining egg whites.
Grease a souffle pan (2 quarts) generously with butter.
– Pour in the souffle mix and bake for 30-35 min on 385 (non-convection), 375 convection.
– The souffle is done when the surface is golden and feels firm when lightly tapped.
Serve with a mixed greens salad and/or fresh baguette.