Gougeres are essentially cheesy popovers. These salty, cheesy puffs filled with the first crisp greens of spring and a tangy vinaigrette make irresistible appetizers.
Odessa's Tips for great Gougeres:
For light puffy Gougeres pre-warm the eggs in the shell and work with warm batter.Serve warm with champagne!Practice makes perfect. Start with small Gougeres piped out to the size of a quarter before progressing to larger puffs. The larger the Gougeres, the more likely they will deflate if taken from the oven before they are set. Gougeres large enough to hold an entree-sized salad can be piped out to a 2.5-inch diameter.Use a high quality hard aged grating cheese such as true Parmesan. Moist cheeses make the batter heavy. We use an aged grating cheese made in Antigo Wisconsin called Stravecchio.Gougere can deflate even when they look done. A simple trick is to slip one gougere off the pan while leaving the rest in the oven. Set it on a cool counter and watch if it deflates in the first half minute. If it does, keep the rest in for another minute to two.Larger Gougeres make a perfect lunch entree. Re-crisp and fill with salad and shaved cheese. Put and extra full teaspoon of lemon vinaigrette in the bottom of the shell. Extra gougere can be successfully frozen and re-crisped. Defrost first, cut off the top so steam can escape. Reheat at 350degree F until hot all the way through. Bite size gougers will take around 5 minutes to re-crisp. 3-inch diameter Gougères will require more like 8 to 10 minutes.