There are quite a few memorable gougéres in my short lifetime. Perhaps it’s the texture or light flake of these puff pastries, but they’re just the most lovely little savory things I can imagine. There’s a little bakery down the block that makes an exceptional version with blue cheese + herbs. And whenever pay a visit to Tartine in San Francisco, I order one without question (and typically in addition to a slice of pie and a croissant.) But for all the occasion that’s wrapped up in acquiring one from these other amazing places, there’s really something special (and so easy!) about making gougéres at home.
For starters, you don’t need many ingredients. Those you do need are very straightforward and are probably already in your pantry or refrigerator. They’re excellent as celebratory treats when you have guests for holidays, but the salty/savory/cheesy side makes them perfect as snacks that are ready for travel; in fact, I made them most recently for the most rad little event at Pro Peloton here in Boulder, all about food, bikes and the places they collide. These gougéres were the first course in a little tasting of jersey pocket snacks that would go just as well in a jersey pocket as they would on a cheese plate (followed by this, this and this.) The best part – no matter where you plan to eat them – they’re quick to make and bake.
There are a couple of things to note here before you leap in. Stir vigorously – really, get after it – when mixing up the dough and adding the eggs. Check for temperature of the dough before adding the eggs and err on the side of caution. Regardless of how deeply you fall in love with these little mouthfuls of cheese and joy, don’t attempt to bake off too many in your oven at once ( I did this) as they won’t puff up and will still be delicious, just not as lovely somehow. Instead, give them space, give them time, and you’ll have gougéres all your own.
Enjoy these! xo L
- 2/3 cup | 160 ml water
- 1/3 cup | 80 ml whole milk
- 1/2 cup | 4 oz | 115 ml butter, thickly sliced
- 3/4 tsp fine-grain sea salt
- 1/2 cup | 2.25 oz | 65 g all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup | 2.25 oz | 65 g whole wheat flour
- 4 eggs, at room temperature
- 1 1/4 cups | 3.25 oz | 90 g Comté or Gruyére
- 4 tablespoons total chopped chives, taragon chervil and thyme
- Preheat the oven to 425°F | 220°C and place the racks in the top and bottom thirds. Line two baking pans with parchment and set aside.
- In a large, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the water, milk, butter and salt just barely to boil, then lower the heat a bit. Add the flours and stir with a wooden spoon vigorously (really! Get after it!) for a few minutes, until the dough starts to come together and appears glossy and smooth. (It will smell faintly toasted as well.) Remove from heat and allow to cool 5-10 minutes, long enough for the eggs not to cook when you add them in!
- Next, one at a time add each of the four eggs being sure to stir them vigorously so that they incorporate after each addition. Stir in 1 cup | 2.5 oz | 72 g of the cheese and herbs. Then, scoop heaping tablespoon-sized dollops of the gougére dough onto the prepared sheet pans, leaving at least 1 1/2 inches | 4 cm in between each (or else they'll steam themselves and not rise!) Sprinkle with the remaining cheese.
- Pop the panned gougéres into the oven and bake for 5 minutes, then lower the heat to 375°F | 190 °C and continue to bake until deeply golden all over, puffed completely and well-set. If you notice that the gougéres in the back are browning faster than the front, go ahead and rotate the pans 180° mid-bake. Move quickly so as not to let too much air out of the oven! Remove from oven and enjoy as soon as possible!