Savoury Soufflé is an airy and cheezy bite with some Mediterranean touch of thyme to make your other half flip! Nothing is more satisfying than dipping your spoon in this fluffy cheese cloud.
This Savoury Soufflé is a fun bite into a cheese cloud and notes of thyme. Soufflé is usually sweet, but this version is savoury and served as an Appetizer or Entrée as you wish! This recipe says for two people as a main meal, so if you want to serve four small starters, use the exact quantities.
The Show Must Go Down
Soufflés are pretty easy to make… although they can infuriate some…They look fabulous puffing up in the oven, but when you take them out, they deflate. However, if they are well cooked, they will stay puffy for a good minute or two, just enough to bring to the table. The bottom line, make sure your guests are already seated when you take them out. Like the French says: “You don’t wait for people to sit at the table for a soufflé; you make them wait for it.” Because it needs to be eaten right away! So don’t panic if it deflates; it’s normal. It still keeps it’s airy and fluffy texture nobody can resist!
Here are a few tricks to nail that soufflé!
- When adding the soufflé to the oven, preheat a metal rack with a bit of water. The soufflés love humidity, and this will keep them moist and puffy.
- If you like the usual flat top soufflé (vs. the broken round top), then you should grill your soufflés for the first 2-3 minutes under the oven grill (at max temp.), then adjust to 180°C (350F°). This will set the top flat.
- Incorporate the whites slowly, without breaking them, adding them in two different shots until the mix is homogeneous. This way, it will keep all its air; add an egg white if you like extra airy.
- A pinch of sugar mid-time you bring up the whites will help to keep the soufflé fluffy.
- Use a straight-side ramequin or ovenproof container; your soufflé will go sideways if inclined.
- NEVER open the oven door to check them; they will deflate.
Don’t Oversize It
I saw recipe with cake size soufflé… non, non, non! A soufflé is meant to be made in a Ramequin or small container. No more than 4cm x 6cm if it’s a main meal. Otherwise, it’s inevitably burning your soufflé. Avoid oversized recipes; a soufflé is meant to be small, elegant, and served next to a lovely green salad.
You could use other cheeses like mature cheddar, parmesan or similar ones. I would avoid fresh ones like mozzarella because they will get stringy, which is not our desired texture. Also, the aromatic could easily be changed to your preference. I love Gruyere and Thyme together, but it could be Marjoram, fresh basil or chives.
Other French Recipes
Savoury Soufflé with Thyme
- 4 ramekin or similar or 2 larger 4x6cm ones
- 250 ml milk
- 70 g Gruyere cheese (or mature cheddar)
- 30 g flour
- 30 g butter
- 4 egg whites
- 1/2 tsp thyme
- 1/2 tsp sugar (optional)
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg (optional)
- salt and pepper
- Bring oven to the MAX (2-3 first minutes), then 180°C (350F°) with a metal rack containing a glass or two of water at the bottom.
- Butter and flour the ramekins and let them cool in the fridge.
- Grate the cheese, separate the eggs.
- Start with a bechamel, add the butter to a small saucepan at medium-high heat, and melt.
- Add the flour, mix it up, and wait a minute or two until it smells nutty.
- Add the cold milk, always on medium-high heat and whisk constantly.
- Add the nutmeg, salt, and pepper and keep whisking until thicker.
- Add the grated gruyere cheese and thyme, remove the fire, and mix.
- Add the yolks to the cooled bechamel and reserve.
- During that time, whisk the egg whites, in a big bowl, until a soft peak forms like in the picture (add a small pinch of sugar mid-way to make it hold better).
- Transfer the bechamel (now a Mornay sauce) to a big bowl.
- Add the egg whites in two shots, with the help of a spatula, turning the whites in the Mornay sauce until homogeneous.
- Add the mix to the buttered ramekins, and leave a finger high at the top; otherwise, they will puff too high.
- Add the ramekins to the metal rack and grill them for 2-3 minutes at first, then lower the oven to 180°C (350F°) for small ramekins 10 minutes is enough if you make a larger ramekin a minute longer or until the top is light brown.
- Serve as soon as it comes out of the oven.