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These light-as-air cheese puffs are rightly called soufflés, despite their unconventional sabayon-type base. They are served floating on a rich cheese cream, called a fondue after the French word for melt.
4 eggs, separated
1/2 cup dry white wine
Salt and freshly ground pepper
4 oz. Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
For the Fondue
3/4 cup heavy cream
4 oz. Gruyère or other easy-melting cheese, grated
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Put the egg yolks and wine in a large heatproof bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water (bain marie) and whisk them together until they reach the ribbon stage. Remove the bowl from the bain marie and whisk until the mixture is cool.
In another bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff. Fold the whites gently but thoroughly into the egg yolk mixture and add salt and pepper to taste.
Bring the cream to the boil in a pan and stir in the Gruyère until melted and smooth. Pour into four shallow ovenproof dishes.
Using two spoons, shape the egg mixture into quenelles and float on the fondue. Sprinkle each quenelle with one-quarter of the grated Parmesan. Bake at 350 F for 10 minutes or until the soufflés are puffed up and golden brown. Serve at once, sprinkled with snipped chives, with grated Parmesan cheese handed separately.
- Replace the Gruyère with blue cheese.
- Add a little rouille to the fondue.
- Add freshly chopped herbs to the fondue.
In Sweden, theyhave perfected the art of salting fish to produce the famous gravlax. Use unskinned salmon fillets; once cured, store wrapped in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
1. Lay two 2 lb. salmon fillets skin-side down in a shallow glass dish. Combine 5 tbsp. sea salt, 2/3 cup sugar and 2 tsp. crushed white peppercorns and sprinkle over the fish Sprinkle I large bunch of coarsely chopped dill evenly over the salt mixture.
2. Lay the uncoated fillet, skin-side up over the other. Place foil-covered cardboard over the fillets an weight it down. Refrigerate for 3 days, turning every 12 hours until the seasoning have penetrated the flesh.
3. To serve, separate the two fillets and cut each one crosswise on the diagonal into thin slices. Fan the slices out on individual plates and serve with lemon and dill, and a mustard and dill sauce.