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French Fridays with Dorie: Gougères

I know, I know – another cooking group?  But it’s Dorie!!!

I was thrilled when I saw Dorie Greenspan had a new cookbook coming out this fall – Around My French Table.  I was even more thrilled when I received a review copy from Thomas Allen & Son:

It’s always tricky to approach reviewing a cookbook because of course, cooking your way through it is the absolute best way to figure out if it’s the real deal or not.  Dorie’s latest is over 500 pages and nearly every recipe is one I want to make. Ok, then.  Enter French Fridays with Dorie – what better way to work your way though a book than with a group of like minded Dorie groupies?  I signed up immediately, loving the fact that you can post as much or as little as your life allows and I especially loved the fact that Dorie chose the recipes for the first month.

Our first assignment was gougères (pp 4-6). What’s a gougère, you ask?  Well think a cream puff/profiteroles but savoury and cheesy.  Its a savoury choux pastry with cheese.  A pre-dinner snack found all over France, the gougère is a specialty of Burgundy where  it’s often served with one of my favourite apéritifs of all time, a kir.

Now I’ve made profiteroles before with some success so I approached this fairly casually. In fact I made them after returning home from the Savour Stratford festival, so I was dead tired and they still worked out. Dorie’s recipe must be failproof if I managed it in that state…  She claims the recipe makes 36, I halved the recipe and it made 30 – and I used a piping bag to ensure my measures were even. No matter, 30 golden puffs of cheesiness using only a very few ingredients is definitely a good deal :-)  I used half Gruyère, half blue cheese because that’s what we had in the fridge and they were perfect.

Problem is… they’re excellent warm but even if you try really hard, it’s difficult to finish 30 of them between two of you. I tucked them away in an airtight container and racked my brains for a use for day-old gougères.  Flipping through AMFT (as one is wont to do – it is a fascinating read with stories interspersed through the recipes), I happened upon Dorie’s onion soup recipe (pp 56-57).  I love a good French onion soup and wondered if I could substitute bread croutons for the day-old gougères??

I had some onions on hand so decided to go for it.  Dorie’s recipe calls for a long, long caramelisation of the onions over a very low heat (mine took nearly 2 hours and they still weren’t as dark as I am sure Dorie meant them to be but it was bedtime!!).  She also uses chicken stock – I normally use beef.  As you can see in the photo below, the soup is not as dark as you might expect a French onion soup to be but the flavour was spot on – you can tell that the onions cooked for a long time.  I placed some gougères in the soup and topped it with cheese (not the best choice – Parmesan – again, the only thing I had on hand) and popped it under the broiler (that’s the grill for you, mum) for about 5 minutes.

And it was cheesy perfection for dinner…

And how did it taste?  I really liked the flavour the gougères brought to the soup – for one thing it meant you could use less cheese – don’t you hate it when you order French onion soup and it’s just overloaded with cheese?  Well Dorie’s version isn’t but this was a most excellent use of leftovers, if I do say so myself…

What I really liked?  That it was so easy to remove each little gougère topped with cheese and pop it in your mouth. Sometimes large bread pieces can be cumbersome to eat (not to mention messy) – this was a slightly more elegant version in terms of ease of eating.

So we’re 2 for 2 right now!  I am excited to join French Fridays with Dorie when time permits and you can too – simply buy the book and register here!  Follow along on Twitter too!

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90 Responses to French Fridays with Dorie: Gougères

  1. penny aka jeroxie October 1, 2010 at 06:23 #

    You go girl! I really wonder where you find the time! **bows**

  2. dorie October 1, 2010 at 06:39 #

    I was really sorry I didn’t get to meet you in Toronto, but reading this post is like having a little visit with you. I absolutely love that you put the gougeres in the onion soup — I think I just might do the same when the weather gets colder.

    Welcome to FFwD!

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite October 2, 2010 at 17:22 #

      Dorie thanks so much for stopping by. I am so looking forward to working my way through your book :-) and am glad you weren’t offended by my recipe combining!

  3. notyet100 October 1, 2010 at 07:19 #

    ummm ,.looks yum..

  4. Jenn October 1, 2010 at 07:38 #

    Mmm they look so yummy, I love gougères!

  5. Belinda @zomppa October 1, 2010 at 08:27 #

    I want to join in! WOW, these are making me hungry. They’re gorgeous.

  6. Dawn October 1, 2010 at 09:24 #

    I love the way you used them for the soup. You’ve inspired me! I’ll be making these this weekend. Going to have to order that book too!

  7. K A B L O O E Y October 1, 2010 at 09:25 #

    It’s a rainy, windy mess here, so seeing these pictures was so comforting. Mmmm, golden cheesy goodness. But a question: are there more days in your week than mine? I’ve got seven and can’t seem to get a fraction of what you do accomplished. DO you have a space/time generator I should know about?

  8. Mr. Neil October 1, 2010 at 09:33 #

    Yes, the size was perfect for the soup – also they didn’t get quite as “soggy” as some bread does. Good all around.

    Trivia to add to the post for other KIR fans:

    The drink (cocktail seems too strong a descriptor) is actually named after a past Mayor of Dijon, Felix Kir. Traditionally, it should only be made with white Burgundy – but not a chardonnay, a white from the grape varietal aligote. He popularised it after WWII.

    (With apologies for lack of accents that cannot be added in comments.)

  9. Michelle October 1, 2010 at 10:07 #

    I think this dish would be perfect for a rainy New England day like today!

  10. Victoria October 1, 2010 at 10:08 #

    Love your idea to do Fridays with Dorie!! Good luck with that. I think you came up with a great use for your leftover gougeres ;-) French onion soup is one of my favorites!!

  11. A Canadian Foodie October 1, 2010 at 10:19 #

    Great thinking. You just gave me a great idea for the dinner club I am in the process of putting together.
    )
    valerie

  12. Heather October 1, 2010 at 10:24 #

    I’m sorry–did you say ‘cheesy’ and ‘choux’ in one sentence?? Yep…I’ll be making this one soon! :) Yum yum YUM. This looks incredible.

  13. Jason's BBQ Adventures October 1, 2010 at 10:37 #

    Mighty good looking recipe!

  14. Island Vittles October 1, 2010 at 11:02 #

    Gougeres are one of my all time favourites — and I think you were inspired to find a “day-old” use for them. Looks delicious! Theresa

  15. bunkycooks October 1, 2010 at 11:47 #

    Two of my favorites combined! I usually use French bread in my onion soup, but I will have to try this!

  16. foodies at home October 1, 2010 at 12:21 #

    Yum…look at all that gooey cheese! Delish!

  17. FrenchTwistDC October 1, 2010 at 12:36 #

    very crafty use of gougeres! Can’t believe you actually used them in soupe a l’onion!

  18. Suzie the Foodie October 1, 2010 at 12:42 #

    I don’t think there is ever too much cheese in this soup but I love the gougères idea, genius! How unusual to use chicken stock but I guess it makes it a bit lighter. Beautiful post Mardi, nicely done!

  19. Daydreamer Desserts October 1, 2010 at 14:07 #

    Beautiful Gougères Mardi! I loved the substitution in the french onion soup… YUM! (If only I had a savory blog…)

  20. carol Egbert October 1, 2010 at 16:04 #

    This soup packs a lot of flavor with a few ingredients. Thanks for a great post.

  21. My Restaurants Melbourne October 1, 2010 at 16:57 #

    I always find french cooking tricky, but yo have mastered it!

  22. Lori Lynn October 1, 2010 at 17:10 #

    The onion soup looks heavenly.
    Congrats on advancing to the next round! Can’t wait to see your dinner party!
    LL

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite October 2, 2010 at 17:17 #

      Thanks! Unfortunately, I am feeling more like onion soup than a big party thanks to a bout of bronchitis but I am sure I can find the energy to rally!

  23. Margaret October 1, 2010 at 17:22 #

    These were super simple to make. And they even worked for me which is a miracle. Yours are beautiful. And loved how you used them.

  24. Chez Us October 1, 2010 at 20:31 #

    Mardi, I am so glad to see you are partaking in a Dorie event. I am such a huge fan of hers and am so excited to work my way through her new book. Your gougeres are lovely and I really like how you used them to top your soup. May have to use that idea!

  25. jayne October 1, 2010 at 21:20 #

    Now I want to make the onion soup, just so I can use gougeres in it! Beautiful job, and what a great idea for the leftovers!

  26. Betty @ scrambled hen fruit October 1, 2010 at 21:51 #

    I love your idea for onion soup- it’s hubby’s favorite. I froze most of these before I baked them, so I have some ready for the next time he makes it. Your gougeres are beautiful!

  27. Kocinera October 1, 2010 at 23:01 #

    This looks so delicious! I love the gougeres as the cheesy topping!

  28. katja October 2, 2010 at 00:01 #

    Hi Mardi,
    Congratulations on moving on to the next challange! am in a contest too, if you would care to vote for me that would be really Great! Oh, and feel free to pass this link on too -lol, just me being shy!

    http://ctvr.us/marinamarket

    Katja

  29. viviane bauquet farre / food and style October 2, 2010 at 08:10 #

    Mardi, leave it to you to think of putting gougère in a soup! Brilliant and delicious idea… I grew up making these cheesy puffs and they are irresistible. With the holidays coming up, they make a great party food.

  30. marla {family fresh cooking} October 2, 2010 at 08:49 #

    These little Gougeres look wonderful, but even more spectacular topped with cheese in that bowl of onion soup.

  31. bridget {bake at 350} October 2, 2010 at 09:21 #

    What a great idea!!! Now I’m craving soup at 8:20 am! :)

  32. Heather @ Side of Sneakers October 2, 2010 at 10:39 #

    Those sound so good!!! Love the idea of the leftovers in the soup!

  33. Candy October 2, 2010 at 14:26 #

    Awesome idea to use the leftover gorgeres in onion soup. The photo of your soup is making my mouth water!

  34. Liren October 2, 2010 at 17:11 #

    Mardi, I can’t believe this idea never crossed my mind! Brilliant! I love Gougeres, love French Onion Soup – together it is a match made in heaven, I’m sure :) I’ll be tucking this away for the future!

  35. Nancy@acommunaltable October 2, 2010 at 19:58 #

    Hi Mardi!

    Sorry to hear you have been sick :-(. I love making gougeres – it’s one of my “go to” fall/winter appetizers. However, I had never thought of using the leftovers as a “crouton’ for the soup – when it cools down here I am definitely going to have to try it!! Thank you for sharing such an delicious recipe and “inventive” use of leftovers!

  36. Barbara Schieving October 3, 2010 at 10:20 #

    What a fun idea to use them in French Onion Soup. They look fabulous! I don’t usually complain about too much cheese in the soup, it’s when I get too many onions and not enough broth that bugs me.

  37. Conor @ HoldtheBeef October 3, 2010 at 11:09 #

    They’re so PUFFY. Puffy in a beautiful light airy delicious way, not in a hungover sleep-deprived eye way.

    Are you allowed to keep sticking more of the leftover ones in the soup until you run out of soup to soak up? Please say you are.

  38. Debby October 3, 2010 at 11:42 #

    Congrats on the top 9!

  39. Serene October 3, 2010 at 18:05 #

    What a clever idea! I’ll have to try it, if the piranha (our teenager) ever leaves us with leftover gougeres. :-)

  40. mike October 3, 2010 at 22:34 #

    Hm… I made FOS last week… drat! What a perfect pairing! Guess I’ll have to make both again – congrats on your FB #1! Beautiful gougeres!

  41. Margaret October 4, 2010 at 14:20 #

    Mardi, Your gougeres are gorgeous. And what a great idea to use them as croutons in the onion soup. I made the whole batch but only baked up 12. The rest are in the freezer – possible croutons!!??

  42. Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction October 6, 2010 at 22:48 #

    I have no idea how you keep up with everything… You’re incredible! This recipe looks fabulous. I still need to get a copy of Dorie’s new cookbook!

  43. Sneh Roy October 11, 2010 at 20:42 #

    OMG, that looks incredible! Inspired :-)

  44. Vanessa October 11, 2010 at 20:53 #

    Anything with cheese sounds good to me! Sounds heavenly!

  45. Emily December 28, 2010 at 20:05 #

    Hello! wow your soup looks amazing! I have been making this soup today and I can’t wait to try it! Although I had the same problem with the onions. I was nearing 2 hours of cooking and they were still not as brown as I imagined them to be :[ So I went on to the next step because it’s almost dinner time! I hope it turns out as delicious as yours!

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite December 29, 2010 at 18:32 #

      I am glad to know I was not the only one re: the onions! I do know that it was worth the wait!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Tweets that mention French Fridays with Dorie: Gougères -- Topsy.com - October 1, 2010

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Bonita, Mardi. Mardi said: #French Fridays with Dorie: Gougères http://goo.gl/fb/YFygi #doriegreenspan #ffwdorie #cheese #cookbooks #eat #onions [...]

  2. Chez Us » Gougeres - October 1, 2010

    [...] Gougeres with Mardi [...]

  3. It was a Sign: Make Gougères | The Fit Traveler: Food, Travel and Fitness - October 4, 2010

    [...] was contemplating making the gougères for friends who were coming over Saturday night when I saw Mardi’s post at Eat. Live. Travel. Write. and I knew it was a sign that I had to give them a try.  I would have [...]

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