Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: +- 40 minutes
Serves: 8-10
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Twice Baked Cheddar SoufflesThe last recipe I posted was my Cheddar & Wild Mushroom Croquettes made with Healey’s Noble Slow Matured White Cheddar. Because I received such a generous slab, I had a fabulous excuse to make these Twice Baked Mature Cheddar Souffles. I usually do them with Gruyere or sometimes a mixture of 3 cheeses like creamy blue cheese, mature cheddar and Parmesan. This particular cheddar, however, is so stand alone flavourful that it worked a treat. Twice baked souffles are an entertainer’s cheat that saves us from many a grey hair. The first bake is done before guests arrive to get the delicious cheesy aromas wafting through the house and when ready to serve, simply  drizzle with reduced cream and a sprinkle of more cheese and bake again until puffed and golden delicious. These guys need to be served immediately to keep that light airiness about them. Perfect served as a starter or light lunch with my beetroot and red onion compote and some lightly dressed rocket or greens of your choice. Enjoy!

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80 ml cake flour
250 ml full cream milk
1 tsp (5 ml) mustard powder
1 tsp (5 ml) dried tarragon
pinch of nutmeg
Freshly ground salt and pepper
4 large eggs, carefully separated
2 cups (500 ml) grated mature cheddar or Gruyere
thyme leaves for sprinkling
250 ml cream
1/4 cup (60 ml) finely grated mature cheddar, Gruyere or Parmesan
8 – 10 sprigs of thyme

Preheat the oven to 190 Degrees Celsius.
Grease and line a muffin tray or 8 – 10 ramekins with grease-proof paper.
In medium heavy based pot, whisk the flour and some of the milk to create a smooth paste. Gradually add the rest of the milk. Add the seasoning. Turn on the heat and bring to a simmer whisking continuously until very thick and smooth. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.
Stir in the cheese and one egg yolk at a time until well combined.
In a clean bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks and carefully fold into the cheese mixture.
Spoon mixture into ramekins or muffin tray until 3/4 full. sprinkle with thyme leaves.
Place in a warm water bath (bain-marie) and bake for 20 minutes or until puffed and golden. This can be done beforehand – up to a day before if need be.
Meanwhile, in a saucepan, heat the cream until reduced to a coating consistency. Remove form the heat and stir in the finely grated cheese. Season to taste. Set aside.
Before serving, set oven temp to 180 Degrees Celsius. Carefully remove souffles from the muffin tray or ramekins and gently peel the grease-proof paper off. Place them on a greased baking tray pale bottom sides facing up. Alternatively place souffles individually on oven proof serving plates or skillets.
Spoon the cheesy cream sauce generously over over each souffle and top with a sprig of thyme.
Bake for 15 minutes or until golden and puffed up again.
Serve immediately with beetroot and red onion compote and lightly dressed leafy greens.

Beetroot and Red Onion Compote [optional]

2 red onions, finely sliced
2 large beetroot, peeled and finely diced or julienned (use gloves!)
1 tsp (5 ml) dried tarragon
1 tsp (5 ml) dried thyme
1 Tbs (15 ml) olive oil
1/3 c (80 ml) Shiraz or another punchy red wine of choice
1/3 c (80 ml) brown sugar
2 Tbs (30 ml) old brown sherry or port
Freshly ground salt and pepper to taste

In a small pot add the onions, beetroot and herbs to the heated oil and lightly saute for 2 minutes.
Add the wine, sugar and sherry or port. Mix until evenly combined, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove lid and simmer over a low heat for another 15 minutes or until sticky and reduced. Season with salt and pepper.

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