Souffle de Champignons

A savoury souffle, Souffle de Champignons (soo-flay de shom-peen-yon) is an excellent supper dish served with Pommes de

Terre a la Lyonnaise and Tomato Salad.

3 oz. butter

1 garlic clove, crushed

8 oz. button mushrooms, wiped clean and finely chopped

2 oz. flour

8 fl. oz. milk

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon Mushroom Ketchup

1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives

2 tablespoons single cream

4 egg yolks

5 egg whites

Preheat the oven to fairly hot 400°F (Gas Mark 6, 200°C). Grease a 2-pint souffle dish with 1 tablespoon of the butter and set aside.

In a medium-sized saucepan, melt 1 ounce of the remaining butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the garlic and mushrooms and cook, stirring constantly, for 3 minutes. With a slotted spoon, remove the mushrooms from the pan and drain them on kitchen paper towels. Keep hot.

Add the remaining butter to the pan and melt it over moderate heat. Remove the pan from the heat and, with a wooden spoon, stir in the flour to make a smooth paste. Gradually add the milk, stirring constantly. Return the pan to the heat and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 to minutes or until the sauce is thick and smooth. Stir in the salt, pepper, mush-room ketchup and chives. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the cream. Set the mixture aside to cool to luke-warm. Add the mushrooms and egg yolks and stir well until the ingredients are thoroughly combined.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, beat the egg whites with a wire whisk or rotary beater until they form stiff peaks. Using a large metal spoon, carefully fold the beaten egg whites into the sauce.

Pour the mixture into the prepared souffle dish. Place the dish in the centre of the oven and reduce the temperature to fairly hot 375°F (Gas Mark 5, 190°C). Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until the souffle has risen and is golden brown on top, and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Remove the souffle from the oven and serve immediately.

Souffle d’Epinards et Jambon

A tasty mixture of spinach, ham and cheese combines to make Souffle d’Epinards et Jambon (soo-flay d’eh-peen-ahr eh jahm- bohn) a satisfying dish to serve for a light lunch.

3 oz. butter

2 shallots, finely chopped

4 oz. cooked ham, finely chopped

2 oz. flour

4 fl. oz. milk

4 tablespoons spinach puree

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon paprika

2 oz. Emmenthal cheese, grated

2 tablespoons single cream

4 egg yolks

5 egg whites

Preheat the oven to fairly hot 400 °F (Gas Mark 6, 200°C). Grease a 2-pint souffle dish with 1 tablespoon of the butter. Set aside.

In a medium-sized saucepan, melt 1 ounce of the remaining butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the shallots and ham and cook, stirring frequently, for 3 to 4 minutes or until the shallots are soft and translucent but not brown. With a slotted spoon, remove the shallots and ham from the pan and keep warm.

Add the remaining butter to the pan and melt it over moderate heat. Remove the pan from the heat and, with a wooden spoon, stir in the flour to make a smooth paste. Gradually add the milk, stirring constantly. Stir in the spinach.

Return the pan to the heat and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes or until the sauce is thick and smooth. Stir in the salt, pepper, paprika and cheese and cook, stirring constantly, for a further 2 minutes or until the cheese has melted. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the cream. Add the reserved shallot and ham mixture and stir well to mix.

Set aside to cool to lukewarm, then beat in the egg yolks, one at a time.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, beat the egg whites with a wire whisk or rotary beater until they form stiff peaks. With a large metal spoon, carefully fold the beaten egg whites into the sauce. Pour the mixture into the prepared souffle dish.

Place the dish in the centre of the oven and reduce the temperature to fairly hot 375°F (Gas Mark 5, 190°C). Bake for to 30 minutes or until the souffle has risen and is golden brown on top, and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Remove the souffle from the oven and serve immediately.

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