Diana’s French Recipe Test Kitchen, Recipe #2

 

I don’t cook much as you all know,  so attempting something as finicky as the classic Cheese soufflé felt like a tall order.

However, one rainy and cold Sunday, when frankly even going out to a museum or having lunch in a cozy café seemed like too much effort, I decided to stay home and take on this challenge.

 

Some of the ingredients To Make A Cheese Soufflé

 

I followed a classic recipe created when American chef Julia Child was studying French cooking in Paris.  The recipe ended up in the book she co-wrote for the American market called Mastering The Art Of French Cooking (1961).

But to be frank, I am a visual person so instead of following the recipe from a book, I watched the TV episode on Cheese soufflé on Child’s former cooking show.

 

The French Chef ran from 1963 to 1973.

 

What a hoot! It starts with Julia’s distinctly high almost-screeching voice,

“SEEEEEE how to BEEEE the Boss of the BIIIIIG Cheese Soufflé today on The French Chef.”

Cue upbeat piccolo music 🎼!

I giggled remembering the spoof that NBC’s Saturday Night Live did of Julia (played by comedian Dan Aykroyd) deboning a chicken. A must-see if you haven’t!

 

Actor Dan Aykroyd spoofs Julia Child’s TV Show The French Chef (1978)

 

BUT, I digress.

I laid out all the ingredients in my tiny kitchen and  followed the recipe to the letter.  The cheese had to be Swiss. I used Gruyère; the milk had to be hot but not scalded; and the egg yolks carefully separated from the egg whites.

 

 

I laboured over preparing the Béchamel sauce, carefully melting the butter, adding the flour bit by bit, and then the hot milk. Keeping the sauce warm, I held my breath adding the eggs yolks fearful that they would curdle.  They didn’t  Phew!

 

Adding the egg yolks to the sauce

 

I then beat the egg whites to the required stiffness and began folding them into the Béchamel using a spatula and Julia’s special method,  “PLONK in goes the spatula to the middle, then to the side…up and out.”

I admit I talked to myself mimicking Julia’s signature voice throughout the preparation.

I then spooned the mixture into two soufflé dishes, I prepared two just in case one didn’t work out.

 

Ready for the oven 

 

Julia recommends fastening a collar made of tin foil to the dishes to make sure it does not overflow.  It’s a great idea.

Thirty minutes later at 375 degrees F I had two perfect soufflés, although I admit, I took the following pictures within seconds of taking them out of the oven — as after 30 seconds, they began to deflate and overall lost about an inch.

 

My first (and only?) soufflés

 

I am not sure that this is normal because Julia’s did not seem to do that.

Anyway, never mind, they were absolutely delicious!

And while I may never attempt this again, I can confidently cross off Cheese Soufflé à la Julia Child from Diana’s French Recipe Test Kitchen.

Bon Appetit!  (pronounced in a High Screechy Voice)

Julia Child’s Recipe for Cheese Soufflé — The Ingredients 
  1. 2 Tbs finely grated Parmesan or other hard cheese.
  2. 2 1/2 Tbs butter.
  3. 3 Tbs flour.
  4. 1 cup hot milk.
  5. Seasonings: 1/2 tsp paprika, a speck of nutmeg, 1/2 tsp salt, and 3 grinds of white pepper.
  6. 4 egg yolks.
  7. 5 egg whites (2/3 cup)
  8. 1 cup (3 1/2 ounces) coarsely grated Swiss cheese.

 

The Video: The French Chef

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IFAjJif7OoY

And soooo… what should I make next?  Suggestions are Welcome! 

 

 

AND WHO WON THE DRAW for SILK SCARF?

Margaret Ann Gendreau of Vancouver, Canada

 

Margaret Ann on a trip to Paris

 

Her friend Juliette Wood referred her to my blog so many thanks Juliette and congrats Margaret Ann!

You will be hearing more about this winner in the near future when hopefully she will send us a picture modelling this beautiful 100% silk scarf purchased from Greenscarfboutique.com.

 

 

There were dozens of ENTRIES from Canada, the US, the UK, Australia and France so thank you all so much and I promise the next GIVEAWAY is coming SOON!

10 Comments

  1. Marylutoms on May 4, 2019 at 11:12 pm

    You are very brave and they look fabulous. Julia would be proud!!

    • Diana Bishop on May 5, 2019 at 5:44 pm

      I did feel brave — so not a fussy cook. Love hearing from you Mary Lu!

  2. Shardie Stevenson on May 5, 2019 at 8:44 am

    In this blog you have most certainly conjured up Julia to make me laugh and…..the soufflé looks perfect ! Julia Child would be proud … I can hear her voice saying , “ well done ,Diana” 👍🏻❤️

    • Diana Bishop on May 5, 2019 at 5:43 pm

      I love Julia Child and I know you too have seen the movie Julie and Julia which was so wonderful. Anyway this was my very tiny attempt to honour this pioneering women who broke into French cuisine! Thanks for the comment Shardie.

  3. Christine Kowal on May 5, 2019 at 9:13 am

    Wonderful looking Cheese Soufflés. They’ve always been a scary mystery to me. I had no idea how they were made. Lots of Love Christine and The Animals

    • Diana Bishop on May 5, 2019 at 5:41 pm

      Christine — thank you for reading my blog and sending this comment. I was scared too! I did eat them almost as quickly as I made them! Best to you — Diana

  4. Lynda Davis on May 8, 2019 at 12:00 pm

    The last time I even attempted (or heard of anyone wanting to make) a cheese soufflee was in Grade 9 Home Ec class. Why our teacher selected that for our very first cooking class is beyond me. Why couldn’t she have picked something simpler like an omlette or even just simple white sauce? Never tried again and never intend to. And that was nearly 60 years ago.

    • Diana Bishop on May 8, 2019 at 4:07 pm

      Yes I get it! That’s why I wanted to try it. It was a bucket list item for me having been brought up to love French cooking living in France. But no, I would never try it again.
      Thanks for sharing Lynda! Diana

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