I would like Jacques Pépin to come to my kitchen. He seems like such a pleasant chef. I enjoy watching him on TV. Apparently, he has a new TV show called Essential Pépin that will be coming out in the fall of 2011.
On Christmas Eve, we put a prime rib in the oven for an hour, and then turn the oven off for three hours. During the off time, we head out to Mass. When we return, we turn the oven on again and everyone starts making a little something to bring to the table.
I make Jacques Pépin's Gougères. You can make them the morning before and pop them in the refrigerator and bake them when you get home. You can even freeze them. This recipe is taken from Food & Wine.
Makes about 30
1 cup milk
4 T unsalted butter
1/4 t salt
dash of cayenne pepper (I add some cracked pepper as well)
1 cup ap flour
3 large eggs
1/2 t papirika
1/2 c grated Parmesan cheese
1 & 1/2 c grated Swiss cheese
Coarse sal, fleur de sel or kosher salt. If you are going to put them in the refrigerator, don't put the salt on top until right before baking.
- Bring the milk, butter, salt, and cayenne to a boil in a saucepan. Remove from the heat, add the flour all at once, and mix vigorously with a wooden spatula until the mixture forms a ball. Return the pan to the heat and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 1 minute to dry the mixture a bit. Transfer to the bowl of a food processor, let cool for 5 minutes, then process for about 5 seconds.
- Add the eggs and paprika to the processor bowl, and process for 10 to 15 seconds, until well mixed. Transfer the choux paste to a mixing bowl, and let cool for 10 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 375°. Line a cookie sheet with a reusable nonstick baking mat or parchment paper. Reserve 1 tablespoon of the grated Parmesan cheese, then add the remainder and all the Swiss cheese to the choux paste. Stir just enough to incorporate. Using a tablespoon, scoop out a level tablespoon of the gougère dough, and push it off the spoon onto the cooking mat. Continue making individual gougères, spacing them about 2-inches apart on the sheet. Sprinkle a few grains of coarse salt and a little of the reserved Parmesan cheese on each gougère. Bake for about 30 minutes, until nicely browned and crisp. Serve lukewarm or at room temperature with drinks.