Sometimes I am lying in bed at night, hovering on the edge of falling asleep, and a recipe just comes to me.Â
In trying to remember where I got this idea, I am pretty sure it came from one of my old issues of Gourmet.Â This is one of those recipes that would have embedded itself in the back of my consciousness, and subtly but surely crept periodically back into my thoughts — so that the next time I went to the cheese store (yes, I do, in fact, live 2 blocks away from a cheese store), I’d think… gorgonzola… choux pastry…. Gougeres.
And these are such a great party food that I’m sad I wasted this recipe on just me and Chad.Â Simple, elegant, and inexpensive, they would be great for a crowd of nibbling cocktail-drinkers.Â And ifÂ I ever, someday, own my own restaurant, I think these just might be my amuse bouche.
Have I convinced you yet?Â Give them a try.
Blue Cheese Gougeres
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup water
1 stick unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese
4 eggs, at room temperature
3 ounce block of blue cheese, to be sliced, for serving
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line two baking sheets with waxed or parchment paper.
In a medium sized saucepan, bring the milk, water, butter and salt to the boil. Once the mixture is at a rolling boil, add all of the flour at once, reduce the heat to low and start to stir the mixture vigorously with a wooden spoon. The dough comes together very quickly. Stir for 2-3 minutes, and then transfer the dough to the bowl of your mixer.
Add the blue cheese and mix using a whisk attachment until smooth. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each egg has been added to incorporate it into the dough. The dough should be still warm. It is now ready to be used for the gougeres.
Fill a large pastry bag fitted with a large star (or plain) tip nozzle with the warm cream puff dough. Pipe the dough onto the baking sheets in small circle-shaped puff shapes. Leave about 2 inches between each puff to allow them room to expand.
Slide both the baking sheets into the oven and bake for 7 minutes. After the 7 minutes, slip the handle of a wooden spoon into the door to keep in ajar. When the gougeres have been in the oven for a total of 12 minutes, rotate the sheets top to bottom and front to back. Continue baking for a further 10 minutes or until the gogueres are puffed, golden and firm. The total baking time should be approximately 20-25 minutes.
Allow the gougeres to cool, and then slice each one in half with a sharp knife. Place a small (2-inch) slice of blue cheese into each one. Replace the tops, and serve!