Wednesday, December 21, 2011

~Three-Cheese Gougeres~

 

picture from marthastewart.com



Martha Stewart Living, December 2011
  • Prep Time 25 minutes
  • Total Time 55 minutes
  • makes 26

 

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • Coarse salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 large eggs, plus 1 large egg yolk, lightly beaten for egg wash
  • 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese (2 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese (2 ounces)
  • 3/4 cup grated Gruyere cheese (2 ounces)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat wine, 1/2 cup water, butter, sugar, and 3/4 teaspoon salt in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat until butter melts. Remove from heat and immediately stir in flour using a wooden spoon. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture pulls away from sides of pan and a film forms on the bottom, about 3 minutes.
  2. Transfer dough to the bowl of a mixer and beat on medium speed until slightly cooled, about 1 minute. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, then cheddar and blue cheeses.
  3. Spoon 26 mounds of dough (about 1 1/2 inches wide) onto 2 parchment-lined baking sheets. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with Gruyere. Bake for 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and continue to bake until gougeres are browned and cooked through, about 20 minutes more. Serve warm or at room temperature.

It's a good thing...or is it?


Eleven days left of 2011 and five days until Christmas.  Several days ago I took Gabriel and Sarah to the mall to see Santa.  Just as soon as they finished I handed the kids to Ben and jumped onto Santa's lap.  A girl is never too old to tell someone her wishes.  After I got through telling him to take away world hunger and to create world peace I mentioned that I had one very important, personal wish this year.  "What else could you want?", he queried, peering over his circular glasses.  I quickly responded in order to avoid the urge to tug at his beard to see if it was real.  " To meet Martha,"  said I. "Who?," he enquired, in a quizical tone. "I would like to meet Martha Stewart."  He chuckled.  I did not. 

I was very serious about that.  It is never out of style, to have a hero. To meet mine would be the ultimate good thing.  Want me to get specific?  Okay, I would love to have dinner in Bedford, in Martha's dining room.  Could you imagine that?  What would that be like?  Well, I haven't the slightest clue, but I know it would be a treasured experience that even my great grandchildren would recount.  I can see it now.  "My Great-Great Grandmother Morgan once shared a meal with Martha Stewart, at her house, no less." That would be cool.

Today I emailed Martha Stewart's staff to let them know that my year long project is coming to a close.  I made sure to say that Martha's inspiration and knowledge has taught me (and my family) how to live a much better everyday life.  Such a life-style teacher helps the rest of us learn simplicity, beauty and order, and will always deserve a standing O.  I have yet to hear back from the staff (I emailed in September when my blog was near the half-way mark). No reply. If I do receive a response you'll be the first to know.  Cross your fingers.  ;)

   Back to the Gougeres

Fancy Schmancy name, isn't it?  It caught my eye.  Kevin Sharkey, expert designer at Martha Stewart Living, made these same hors d'oeurvres for his party.  Now, Kevin is a man of fine taste so I knew that anything he made would be an automatic success.  Make sure to check out the December, 2011 article (Page 158) decorated with elegant photos, and recipes of his holiday party treats. Wow!



Photo Gallery

A few days ago, our family celebrated Gabriel's 4th birthday.  My mother-in-law had everything covered so I decided to make an hors d' oeuvres, namely, three-cheese Gougeres.  Originating in the Burgundy region of France, a Gougere (Goor-Zhay) is considered a form of choux pastry.  They can be filled with all sorts of yummy ingredients like mushrooms or meat. In fact, the cheese version was easy to make, and involved a rather interesting baking process. They ended up tasting...well...cheesy.  That's a perfect combo for an enjoyable hors d'oeurvre baking experience.

The baking prep begins.

I'm thinking to myself, "all this cheese is making me hungry.  I can't wait to snack on the extra cheese".
The ingredients are carefully measured, and then precisely weighed.


The first step is to gently simmer the water, wine and butter mixture on the stove.  Once the butter was melted I moved on to the next step.


After the butter was melted, the pot was removed from the heat. Flour was then added.  After three minutes of continuous stirring, the dough was ready for the mixer.  Notice that the mixture pulls away from the sides and bottom of pan which is your signal of completion.

.  


Yes!  The cheese is added.  Cheddar and bleu cheese are mixed into the dough.
 

The recipe stated that 26 mounds could be made.  In order to divvy out consistent sizes onto the parchment paper I used my trusty ol' large ice cream scooper.  It gave me about 12 mounds.
 

Smothered with gruyere, the Gougeres are now basking in the oven.  The
house began to smell of a cheddar, bleu and gruyere cheeses.  I didn't have to worry about air freshener as this more than did the trick.



These fresh puff pastries would have been a little fluffier had I scooped smaller sizes onto the baking sheet.  They turned out to be biscuit-sized instead of bite-sized, but tasted just as good.  I'm now on the lookout for a smaller scoop, or a cookie scoop, so that this task can be properly accomplished next time.


The adults enjoyed the appetizer, but my four-year son, Gabriel, did not.  He took one bite, smiled at me and then dropped his mouthful onto his plate and ran away.  Haha!  It was the bleu cheese, I know it was.  Next time, to make a more kid-friendly version I will omit the bleu and just add extra cheddar.  You can't miss with cheddar cheese. 
The texture was soft, and very similar to a croissant, as Ben's grandmother Renate pointed out.  If you find yourself in need of making a sophisticated and simple appetizer do consider these tasty cheese "biscuits".  If you are a cheese lover, then they are a must, in my opinion.  Yum! Below is a close-up of the final product's heavenly interior.


~Hors' d' oeurvres...Gougere me!~


2 comments:

yinzerella said...

Lady, I nominated you for an award of sorts. I hope you accept!
http://yinzerella.wordpress.com/2011/12/15/holiday-howdy-ho-and-the-liebster-blog-awards/

The Green Mama said...

Dear Yinzrella,

An award?! Are you sure that you have the right person? Thank you very much. That is very kind of you.

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