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Herbed Gougères

Simply Luxurious
Using pâte à choux as the base, these "small cabbages" are a savory nibble perfect for apéro hour, paired with an aperitif as the day winds down and before the dinner party begins.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Servings 30 gougères

Ingredients
  

  • 250 ml water (about 1 cup)
  • 1/2 tsp fleur de sel
  • 120 grams unsalted butter (about 2/3 cup) the best you can find
  • 125 grams flour, all-purpose (about 2/3 cup)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 100 g Gruyére any flavorful hard cheese will work well (Comté, Emmental, cheddar)
  • 1 cup fresh herbs, chopped (flat-leaf parsley, chives, chevril, basil) chop finely
  • fleur de sel & freshly ground black pepper

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your oven (convection if possible) to 425 degrees Fahrenheit (218 Celsius).
  • On the stove top in a medium size sauce pan, combine over medium heat the water, butter and salt and combine until melted together. Bring to a gentle boil, then immediately remove from the heat and add the flour. Immediately mix with a wooden spoon until all combined and smooth.
  • Place the sauce pan back on the stove top over a low heat for one minute and gently stir to cook out the flour "taste".
  • Remove the pan from the stove top. All of the stovetop cooking is complete. Your pâte à choux is made!
  • Mix into the pâte à choux the eggs, one by one. Mix until smooth.
  • Add the grated cheese to the mixture.
  • Add the chopped herbs until full incorporated.
  • Prepared a parchment-lined baking sheet, and using two spoons (one large and one small if possible), place dollops onto the pan, providing about an inch of space between each gougère.
  • Using the left over egg wash, brush the top of each gougère to smooth and soften. Then sprinkle each with a little of the remaining grated cheese.
  • Turn down the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (176 Celsius).
  • Place the gougères into the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Do not peek as they will deflate upon opening the oven and no longer rise.

To prepare the remaining for freezing

  • On a parchment-lined baking sheet, place the remaining batter in dollops, closer together than what you would do if you were baking them fresh (as they will not expand). Cover with plastic wrap and place in the freezer for 2-4 hours.
  • Once the dollops are frozen, remove the baking sheet from the freezer, remove the dollops and place in a smaller lid-tight container and place back in the freezer.
  • Keep in the freezer up to 2-3 months.

How to Bake the Frozen Gougères

  • Remove the frozen gougères from the freezer and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Add a bit of egg-wash and then grated cheese. Place in the oven as you have done for the fresh (preheat to 425, then reduce to 350 when the gougères go in the oven). Bake for 2-5 minutes longer than what you have done for the fresh. Do not peek! :)
  • Enjoy with a glass of Burgundy wine - Chablis, Pinot Noir or head north a bit and a select a glass of Champagne.
  • Be sure to enjoy more than just one or two or even three. :)