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Mature Cheddar Souffles. Serves 8-10.

From Galston Blackiston.

Too many cooks shy away from making soufflés, fearing last minute hassle and disaster. Have no such fear with this recipe.
425 ml (1 pint) milk
Slice of onion
Pinch of nutmeg
75g (3oz) butter
75g (3oz) plain flour
Pinch of dry English mustard powder
250g (9oz) mature Cheddar cheese, grated
6 eggs, separated
50g (2oz) Cheddar cheese, finely grated for finishing
425 ml (1 pint double cream)
Salt & pepper
8-10 7.5cm (3in) ramekins

Butter the inside of the ramekins well. Heat the milk with the slice of onion and the nutmeg. Bring to the boil and set aside. In a separate pan, melt the butter and stir in the flour & mustard powder. Remove the onion from the milk and bring back to just boiling point. Pour the milk into the flour mixture and over a low heat continue to beat the mixture thoroughly with a wooden spoon. Remove from the heat and beat in the grated cheese and egg yolks. Beat until the mixture is smooth, season to taste.
In a clean bowl, whisk the egg whites to soft peaks, and fold gently into the cheese mixture. Fill the ramekins three quarters full with the mixture and stand in a large roasting tin. Pour boiling water halfway up the side of the ramekins and bake in a pre heated oven (190C/375F/Gas 5) for 20 minutes. Once the soufflés are well risen, remove from the oven and allow to cool and sink.
Turn the soufflés out upside down onto a buttered baking tray. At this point you can store the soufflés for up to two days in a fridge or you can freeze them. However be sure to completely defrost and bring back to room temperature before the second cooking. When required, pre-heat the oven to 200C/400F/ gas 6 . Sprinkle the soufflés with the extra grated Cheddar cheese, pour over the double cream and bake again for 15 minutes until the soufflés are once again well risen and golden brown in colour.
Serve immediately with some of the rich cheese sauce spooned over. A bed of sliced & peeled ripe tomatoes with a liberal sprinkling of snipped chives makes a good accompaniment.

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Last updated: 17/02/08