Thursday, March 15, 2012

FFwD - Cheese souffle

Thank God it's Friday!  Today I have to give an external seminar presentation, which fills me with minor dread.  These things always seem like a good idea at the time - then when it's crunch time, I wonder what on earth I was thinking.  Paper done - check.  Slides done - check.  But the scariest part is turning up and having to present the paper in front of a room full of strangers of differing backgrounds, who may in fact know more than you about the topic you are presenting on.  It's a little like the nightmare where you dream you have left the house without your pants on.  There is also audience evaluation where you have to face the reality of what others thought of your presentation.  So, it's just a little stressful for me today.

Compared with that, this week's cheese souffle for French Fridays with Dorie was a breeze.  I have only made souffle once before, but I didn't really put much thought into the process, and it turned out fine.  The roux for the bechamel, normally a nemesis of mine, went off without a hitch.  It turned out so well that I did not even feel the need to strain the bechamel, as it seemed pretty smooth.  Even when my last egg yolk broke and sneakily leaked a bit into my whites, I managed to fish it out and still get big fluffy whites.  And as you can see from my photos, I got a souffle with a very fine quiff on top.

Now for some process photos.   Here is the base bechamel:

This is the bechamel after being spiced, egged and cheesed (I used Swiss Gruyere):

This is the uncooked souffle in its dish ready for baking (yes, I was a little optimistic in hoping that it fitted in properly, and I did get some overflow):

And here is a peek at the yellow, billowy, soft centre underneath the golden brown crust:

It is always a little disappointing that the lovely high top is but a fleeting vision - but that's souffle for you.   However, I captured the moment on film to dream about forever.

To see what all the other Doristas thought of this cheese souffle, visit the LYL section of the FFwD website.  Have a great weekend!