Soufflés have an undeserved reputation. I think they’re much easier and more forgiving than their rap. This one is basically just a white cheese sauce folded through beaten egg whites and baked. I can’t really say it’s fast enough for the Breakfast Cereal Challenge, but it makes a great brunch.
Ironically, soufflés are great for winter when chooks lay less and eggs are less in season, because they make eggs go a long way. This recipe makes 5 eggs feed 4 hungry people, more if you have more accompaniments.
- Find the right baking dish. You need a ceramic or ovenproof glass baking dish, 21 cm diameter or 18.5 cm square, or some ramekins with a similar volume.
- Turn the oven on to heat up to medium-hot.
- Separate 5 eggs, being careful to get no egg yolk in the white. (I do them one by one, into a cup, so that if one egg yolk breaks it doesn’t ruin the whole batch). You may find it a little easier to whisk the whites if the eggs are a day or two old – very fresh eggs can be a little harder to get stiff enough. And you may find it a little easier with room temperature eggs, rather than straight out of the fridge. But really, it only makes a marginal difference.
- Grate 60 grams of low fat feta cheese and 60 grams of low fat mature or vintage cheese.
- Melt 2 dessertspoons of butter in a pot. Add 4 dessertspoons of plain flour. (I used wholemeal plain flour because that’s what I had, but I sieved the bran out first.) Cook on a low heat for a few minutes until the flour bubbles, but don’t let it brown.
- Pour in a cup of low fat milk, stirring all the while. Keep stirring until it thickens.
- Take it off the heat and straight away stir in the grated cheeses, so they melt through, then whisk in the 5 egg yolks.
- In a clean, dry bowl, beat the 5 egg whites until they are stiff. An old fashioned egg beater is the perfect implement – it takes literally less than a minute.
- Gently fold the cheese sauce into the beaten egg whites. Pour into your ungreased baking dish.
- Bake for around 30 minutes, till it is risen and set. Mine has never sunk through peeking, though it is best served straight away as it does deflate a bit as it cools. I opened the oven half way through this one’s baking to add a tray of whole mushrooms and halved cherry tomatoes sprinkled with oregano, which made it into a real gourmet breakfast.