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Gougères

  • SERVINGS: MAKES ABOUT 6 DOZEN
  • MAKE-AHEAD
  • STAFF-FAVORITE
  • VEGETARIAN

Serve these buttery, eggy cheese puffs warm or let them cool to room temperature and fill with herbed cream cheese.

  1. 1/2 cup milk
  2. 1/2 cup water
  3. 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  4. 1 teaspoon sugar
  5. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  6. Pinch of cayenne pepper
  7. Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  8. 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  9. 5 large eggs
  10. 1 3/4 cups finely shredded Gruyère or other Swiss-type cheese (5 ounces)
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°. Lightly butter 2 large baking sheets. In a large saucepan, combine the milk with the water, butter, sugar, salt, cayenne and nutmeg and bring to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat, add the flour and stir with a wooden spoon until a thick, smooth pastelike batter forms. Cook the batter over moderate heat for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
  2. Scrape the batter into a large heatproof bowl and add 4 of the eggs, beating them in 1 at a time until fully incorporated. Beat in 11/4 cups of the cheese.
  3. Using a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain round tip or 2 small spoons, pipe or spoon slightly rounded tablespoons of the batter onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing them 1 inch apart. Lightly beat the remaining egg. Brush the tops of the gougères with the egg wash, then sprinkle them with the remaining 1/2 cup of shredded cheese. Bake the gougères for 20 minutes, or until puffed and golden; shift the pans from front to back and top to bottom halfway through. Serve warm.
Make Ahead The baked gougères can be cooled completely and frozen in airtight containers for up to 1 month. Reheat them in a 325° oven for 6 to 7 minutes. Do not let them get crisp.

Suggested Pairing

Champagne or sparkling wine, with its appetite-stimulating effervescence, is the ideal aperitif for a celebratory dinner. The bubbles complement these rich and salty gougères. Serve a French Champagne or an Australian sparkling wine.

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