goat cheese and walnut souffles with watercress and frisee salad

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Servs: 8

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  • add   1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves or 1/4 teaspoon crumbled dried
  • add   1 1/2 cups crumbled mild goat cheese such as Montrachet (about 6
  • add    specialty produce markets), rinsed and spun dry
  • add   2 tablespoons olive oil
  • add   3 tablespoons Sherry vinegar
  • add   3/4 cup walnuts, toasted lightly, cooled, and chopped fine
  • add   1 cup milk
  • add   5 cups torn frisée (French or Italian curly chicory, available at
  • add   3/4 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
  • add    ounces)
  • add   3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • add   2 large bunches of watercress, rinsed, spun dry, and coarse stems
  • add   <B>For the salad</B>
  • add   &nbsp;discarded (about 5 cups)
  • add   4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • add   4 large eggs, separated, the whites at room temperature
  • add   4 tablespoons walnut oil
  • add   <B>For the souffl&eacute;s</B>
  • add   a pinch of cream of tartar

Instructions

  1. Make the soufflés:
  2. Coat the bottom and side of each of 8 buttered 1/2-cup ramekins with about 1 tablespoon of the walnuts and arrange the ramekins in a jelly-roll pan. In a small saucepan melt the butter over moderately low heat, whisk in the flour, and cook the roux, whisking, for 3 minutes. Add the milk in a stream, whisking, and boil the mixture over moderate heat, whisking, for 2 minutes, or until it is thick and smooth. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and let it cool slightly. Whisk in the yolks, 1 at a time, the goat cheese, the thyme, and salt and pepper to taste and whisk the mixture until it is combined well. In another bowl beat the whites with a pinch of salt until they are frothy, add the cream of tartar, and beat the whites until they just hold stiff peaks. Whisk one third of the whites into the cheese mixture and fold in the remaining whites gently but thoroughly. Divide the soufflé mixture among the ramekins, sprinkle each soufflé with about 1 1/2 teaspoons of the remaining walnuts, and bake the soufflés in the upper third of a preheated 400°F. oven for 20 minutes, or until they are puffed and golden.
  3. Transfer a ramekin to each plate and serve the soufflés immediately.
  4. Make the salad while the soufflés are baking:
  5. In a bowl whisk together the vinegar, the mustard, and salt and pepper to taste, add the oils in a stream, whisking, and whisk the dressing until it is emulsified. In a bowl toss the watercress and the frisée with the dressing and divide the salad among 8 plates.

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