We’re staying in the Delta Quadrant this week, because this tula cheese souffle is too delicious to resist! While we never see this dish on screen, I would not be surprised if it was one of Neelix’s most requested recipes. Neelix offers this dish to Harry Kim before Harry goes off on his first (and brief) captaincy (Voyager: Nightingale) - and Harry, as usual, doesn’t know what he wants. I know if Neelix offered me this dish, I’d definitely accept!
This cheese souffle is very rich and quite luxurious. I know many people are scared of making souffles but once you make a few you will wonder why you didn’t before. They are actually relatively simple to make, provided you are ready to serve them as soon as they come out of the oven. This basic recipe for a cheese souffle can be used to make any flavour of souffle you wish.
Replicate your own
(Makes 6 individual souffles)
(Based on the “Perfect Cheese Souffle” recipe at the bottom of this page)
You will need 6 oven safe ramekins or small dishes to cook the souffles in.
40g / 1.4oz butter, plus extra for greasing
40g / 1.4oz plain flour
300ml / 10oz milk
20g / 0.7oz breadcrumbs or fine-ground polenta, for coating the sides of the ramekins
4 large eggs
100g / 3.5oz cheddar cheese, grated
50g / 1.7oz parmesan, grated
Start by heating the oven to 200°C / 390°F. Put the butter in a medium saucepan and heat until it has melted. Add the flour all at once and cook for a few minutes. Add the milk, and stir until the mixture is smooth and starts to thicken.
Lower the heat and continue to stir the mixture for about 5 minutes, so that it is thick but still pourable. Remove from the heat so the mixture can cool slightly.
Separate the eggs and put the whites in a bowl suitable for whipping. Into the milk mixture, add half of the cheese and stir until smooth. Add the egg yolks, stirring well in between each one. Then add the rest of the cheese.
Prepare your ramekins: grease the bottom and sides with more butter, then add a small amount of breadcrumbs or polenta to each one and shake/tap the ramekin until the bottom and sides are coated with the breadcrumbs/polenta.
Add a pinch of salt to the egg whites, and then whip until stiff. Add a couple of spoonfuls of egg whites into the milk/cheese mixture to loosen it, then gently fold the rest of the egg whites in with a spatula. It is fine if there are still a few small lumps of egg white in the mixture - it doesn’t have to be perfectly smooth.
Divide the mixture between the ramekins (I find a soup ladle the easiest thing to use for this), filling them between 1/2 and 3/4 full.
Put them on a baking tray and bake in the oven for 12-15 minutes, until risen and golden. Serve immediately.
- You can, of course, substitute the cheese for whichever cheese you like
- And of course you can make additions to the souffle - add some chives, perhaps, or even small pieces of mushroom or other vegetable.
- Don’t be disheartened if your souffles fall. All souffles fall as they cool (which is why many restaurants say there is a 20 minute wait if you order a souffle, so they can prepare it fresh and it is served straight away), but are equally delicious in their fallen state.