Giant Gougères

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READY IN: 1hr 15mins
Recipe by Kit..ty Of Canada

Gougères look impressive, but are secretly easy to make. Small ones are usually served as a nibble before dinner (ideally with champagne), but San Francisco's Tartine cookbook supersized ones out in the morning to make a fantastic breakfast. The book suggests filling them with meat, cheese, or greens to make a meal, to gussy up leftovers (especially creamed spinach).

Ingredients Nutrition

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Butter a baking sheet or line with parchment paper. (Use one half sheet pan and one quarter sheet pan because not all 8 pastries will fit on the half sheet pan.).
  2. Combine the milk, butter, and salt in a heavy saucepan and cook over medium heat until the butter melts and the mixture comes to a full boil. (Do not use whole milk, or the gougères will collapse. If you have only whole milk, use half milk and half water.) Add the flour all at once, stirring vigorously with a wooden spoon. Keep stirring until the mixture has formed a smooth mass and pulls away from the side of the pan and some of the moisture has evaporated. This will take about 3 minutes.
  3. Transfer the paste to a heatproof mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add 5 of the eggs, one at a time, incorporating each egg before adding the next. (If using a stand mixer, mix on medium; if working by hand, use a wooden spoon.) When all the eggs have been added, the mixture will be very thick, smooth, and shiny. Use a rubber spatula to mix in the cheese, pepper, and thyme.
  4. Make the egg wash: whisk the remaining egg together with a pinch of salt in a small bowl. Use a large spoon to form 3-inch rounds about 1 inch high on the prepared baking sheet, spacing them about 2 inches apart. Brush with the egg wash and sprinkle with grated cheese. Baked until they have puffed, are light for their size, and are golden brown, 35-45 minutes.
  5. When they come out of the oven, poke a small hole in the side of each pastry to allow steam to escape (this should prevent them from collapsing). If splitting and filling, allow the gougères to cool to room temperature first. Otherwise, serve hot, warm, or at room temperature.
  6. Notes:.
  7. Use this recipe to make classically small gougères, too: just use a spoon to drop the dough into 1-inch mounds spaced 1 1/2 inches apart and bake for about 25 minutes. Small gougères need not be slit when they come out of the oven to avoid collapsing.
  8. Suggests making the large gougeres into a ring, really festive. Having them touch each other helps with the height -- they push each other upwards as they rise.
  9. Alton Brown uses an extra egg white or two for this amount. Helps them dry out and hold their shape.
  10. You can make gougeres with pretty much any cheese you like. The Tartine cookbook says specifically that you can use cheddar, swiss, pecorino, and also any herb that appeals to you.

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