As a relative newbie at hosting dinner parties, I have made the mistake several times of not quite planning my courses right, so that I’m still in the kitchen trying to finish cooking long after my guests have arrived and are ready to eat. To keep this from happening in the future, I have started looking for ways to simplify these events while still serving hot and fresh food.
When I was hunting for an easy appetizer recipe, I realized that gougeres are such a fantastic party food. They are delicious right out of the oven but can be made ahead of time and reheated without losing anything. In fact, when I have leftovers, I freeze them and let them naturally defrost, and they are a delicious addition to my lunch.
Gougeres, like risotto are chameleons. I keep the basic recipe the same but add all kinds of different delicious spices to make each batch taste different.
1 1/2 cups water
10 Tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups unbleached flour, sifted
5 large eggs
1 cup grated gruyere cheese
Chopped Chives, to taste
pepper and salt
1 egg, beaten
1. Preheat oven to 375 deg F.
2. In a medium saucepan, combine 1-1/2 cups of water, 10 T butter and 3/4 t salt and bring to a boil.
3. Remove from heat immediately and add the 2 cups flour at once, stirring with a spatula.
4. When the flour is fully incorporated into the water mixture, return the pan to the heat for a few minutes, stirring constantly until the mixture starts to dry out and pull away from the edge of the pan.
5. Once again remove the pan from the heat and add the eggs one at a time, mixing each one until well blended. The dough should be soft and shiny. Once this is done, add the gruyere and chives. Season with pepper and more salt if needed.
6. Line a baking dish with parchment paper and use a small ice cream scoop to dish out small balls of dough.
7. Brush the tops of the gougeres with the beaten egg and bake for about 35 minutes.
Nutritionals (40 gougeres) Cals: 70, Fat: 5, Carb: 5, Protein: 2