I think everyone (including the author) was pleasantly surprised to learn that Dorie Greenspan's new cookbook was going to be available from Amazon over a month earlier than expected. I can't remember the last time I was this excited about a getting a new cookbook. And over the past several years, I've gotten a lot of new cookbooks. Okay, that's not entirely accurate--lately, most of what I've acquired have been baking books, not savory cooking books. Not that I don't cook; I just seem to get most of my non-baking recipes from cooking magazines. But this is one cookbook that I knew I had to have. With this most recent purchase, I now have five of Dorie's cookbooks. (The others are BFMHTY (of course), Paris Sweets, Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Hermé, and Baking with Julia.) She's now tied with Jacques Pépin in my collection.
A lot of my reason for being so excited is that so many other people were excited with me. Many of us Tuesdays with Dorie bakers have been eagerly awaiting Dorie's new book. I was a bit worried when I learned that it was going to be a regular cookbook, rather than another baking book. Baking is my passion, and my comfort zone. I really wasn't too sure about blogging about savory dishes. Heck, I'm still not quite sure how it's going to work out. But our fearless leader Laurie put together such a cool new group, I had to be a part of it. You can read more about it here. We were all very excited to learn that the October recipes were selected by Dorie herself. First up is the very first recipe in the book, Gougères. Think cream puffs, but cheesy. In a good way. =)
As usual, I couldn't just follow the recipe as written; I did make a couple of slight changes. I started off by putting butter, water, milk and salt in a saucepan and bringing it to a boil. Then I added the flour and stirred like crazy until I had a smooth dough and the bottom of the pan was dry. Next, I transferred the mixture to my stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. My first change was to mix the dough with the paddle for several minutes to let it cool a bit before adding the eggs. My second change was with the eggs. The recipe calls for 5 large eggs. I had extra large eggs in the fridge. Not a big difference in size, but with 5 of them, it might be noticeable. Also, several of my other baking resources recommend using part whole eggs and part whites for drier puffs. So I ended up using 4 eggs and 1 egg white. With the mixer running, I added the eggs to the dough. (I find it easiest to crack all of the eggs into a 2-cup Pyrex measuring cup and gradually pour them in.) It's neat to watch the dough come together as the last egg or two go in. Finally, the cheese is mixed in. I used my #40 disher to scoop the dough onto parchment-lined baking sheets. I did one pan of 20 that got baked right away, and another pan of 15 that went into the freezer. I ended up baking my gougères for a total of 26 minutes.
The verdict? Yum! Well, at least for most of my household. Brianna tried one of the gougères and said she liked it, but then changed her mind. Gillian, on the other hand, love them and ate three or four. Jamie was happy, because he really likes Gruyère, and I haven't made anything with it for a while. I liked them, though I think I'll bake them a minute or two longer next time; they were a bit too wet in the middle (though certainly edible). I still have the ones stashed in the freezer, so we can have these again soon.
For this month only, if you'd like to give these a try you can find the recipe here on the French Fridays with Dorie site. But you should really just buy the book. =) And join the group! To see what everyone else thought of the gougères, head over to this week's Links page.
Next up, Gerard's Mustard Tart (mmm, leeks)!