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Savory Soufflé Supper

SOUFFLÉS BRING TO MIND SPECIAL OCCASIONS AT FORMAL FRENCH
restaurants filled with white tablecloths. They have a reputation for being complicated to make, but like a dance, once you know the steps, soufflés are fun, and visually exciting. Try our simple soufflé supper at the end of a busy day. It will revitalize and comfort you. If you have a well-stocked pantry and refrigerator, you'll be able to have delicious, hot food on the table in no time.

Spicy Sausage with mustard
Baby Greens with favorite dressing
Broccoli and Cheese Soufflé
Old-Fashioned Pumpkin Cookies

Pour yourself a glass of wine, toss a salad, and grill or pan fry some spicy sausage to munch on while you and your family wait for the soufflé to bake. Try one of the new assorted chicken sausages on sale at fine grocery and natural food stores, or relish such old time sold favorites as turkey kielbasa or Italian sausage with fennel.

The soufflé base can be prepped up to an hour ahead and left to rest until you are ready to whip up the egg whites and fold them in to it. We like to use leftover broccoli (or some other vegetable) from dinner the night before. But if you don't have leftover vegetables, quickly cook some up in time to allow them to cool a bit before you add them to the soufflé. Serve a big, fresh salad topped with nutrient-rich sliced almonds and tossed with a favorite dressing (see our Recipe Archive for several dressing recipes).

When it's time for dessert, bring out a plate of our Old-Fashioned Pumpkin Cookies. This traditional cookie is filled with nutrient and fiber-rich pumpkin and the home-spun flavors of cinnamon and nutmeg. The cookies are easy to make and can be baked earlier in the day or the day before. Keep them stored in an airtight container until it's time to eat.

BROCCOLI AND CHEESE SOUFFLÉ

Serves 3-4

¼ cup unsalted butter
3 tablespoons potato starch
1 cup milk, warmed
4 large eggs, separated*
¼ - ½ teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
¼ pound cheddar, Swiss, or Gruyère cheese, shredded
1 cup cooked chopped broccoli, warm or at room temperature

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Position rack in center of oven. Butter 6-cup (1 ½ quart) soufflé dish or spray with cooking spray. You can use an 8-cup (2 quart) soufflé dish and the soufflé will rise well, but it just won't rise over the top of the dish to the same extent.
  2. Melt butter in heavy medium saucepan over low heat. Mix potato starch into melted butter and cook slowly, stirring constantly for 1 minute (roux will look foamy, not paste-like). Gradually stir in warm milk. Increase heat to medium and cook, stirring constantly, until white sauce is smooth, thick and at the boiling point. Remove from heat. Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.
  3. Beat egg yolks in a small bowl with a whisk. Add a little bit of the hot sauce and beat well to temper the eggs. Add egg yolk mixture to sauce and mix until well blended. Stir in shredded cheese and broccoli and mix well. Set aside.
  4. Put egg whites in large, clean bowl of electric mixer. Use clean whisk attachment to beat eggs whites until foamy on medium speed. Turn mixer to high and beat egg whites until stiff peaks form (or hand whisk egg whites in a large copper mixing bowl).
  5. Stir about a cup of the whites into the egg and cheese mixture to lighten it. Then quickly pour this mixture onto one side of the electric mixer bowl containing the stiff egg whites. Gently fold the egg whites into the egg and cheese mixture using a large rubber spatula. This action should not take longer than about 45-50 seconds. Don't worry if a few streaks of egg white remain. Pour into prepared soufflé dish. Place in oven and turn down oven temperature to 375°F.
  6. Bake for 30-35 minutes until soufflé has risen and set. Do not open oven while soufflé is baking (until at least 25 minutes have passed). Serve immediately.

*It is easier to separate eggs when they are cold. It easier/better to whip egg whites when they are at room temperature.

© 2009 by Claudia Pillow and Annalise Roberts


Food Philosopher’s® Gluten–Free

OLD-FASHIONED PUMPKIN COOKIES

Makes 60 small cookies

½ cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup pumpkin purée (see Cook's Note below)
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 ¾ cups brown rice flour mix*
¼ cup sweet rice flour**
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
¾ teaspoon xanthan gum
1 ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
Glaze (recipe follows)

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Position rack in center of oven. Lightly spray cookie sheet with cooking spray.
  2. Beat butter and sugar at medium speed in large bowl of electric mixer until well-blended. Add pumpkin, egg, and vanilla extract, and beat until smooth. Reduce speed to low and add brown rice flour mix, sweet rice flour, baking soda, baking power, xanthan gum, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt; mix until smooth.
  3. Drop by rounded teaspoon onto prepared baking sheets. Bake for about 12-15 minutes until cooked through and edges are slightly browned and firm. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely. Best when eaten within three days of baking. After three days, store in refrigerator. Can be kept in refrigerator for 2 weeks or frozen for up to three weeks.
  4. Drizzle White Chocolate Glaze (see recipe below) or Vanilla Icing (see recipe below) over cookies.

Cook's Note: We recommend LIBBY'S® 100% Pure Pumpkin
*See Gluten-Free Flour Mixes in our Recipe Archive
**We recommend an extra finely-ground sweet rice flour (Authentic Foods makes a good one).

Vanilla Icing

1 ¼ cups confectioner's sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon light corn syrup
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

To make Vanilla Icing: in a small bowl, stir together confectioner's sugar, milk, light corn syrup, and pure vanilla extract until smooth. Add more milk if necessary.

White Chocolate Glaze

4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
2 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter

To make White Chocolate Glaze: melt white chocolate and butter in a small heavy saucepan over medium-low heat; stir constantly until smooth. Immediately remove from heat and cool slightly. Makes about ½ cup. Glaze can be made ahead and rewarmed in microwave. Store tightly covered in refrigerator for up to three weeks.

© 2009 by Claudia Pillow and Annalise Roberts