Three Cheese Gougères with Piquillo Pepper Crème Fraîche
Gougère is a savory baked choux dough pastry made with cheese. To give these gougères a sharp umami flavor, I chose to use three of my favorite hard cheeses: Mimolette, 18-month Manchego, and 36-month Grana Padano. These delectable bites are a surefire crowd-pleaser and ideal for holiday entertaining! Check out my video on how to make these delicious bites!
Once you master making choux, you can also skip the cheese and make sweet profiteroles, filled with pastry cream, whipped cream, or ice cream and smothered in chocolate.
Piping bag and piping tip
Yield: 24–30 gougères
Preparation time: 1½ hours
Cook time: 1 hour
½ cup water
½ cup whole milk
4 oz salted butter
1 tbsp cane sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 large eggs
3 oz 18-month Manchego, grated
2 oz Mimolette, grated
1 oz Grana Padano, grated
½ cup piquillo peppers, pureed
1 cup crème fraîche
Fresh cilantro leaves
Put the water, milk, butter, and sugar into a saucepot on high heat. If you are using unsalted butter, add 1 tsp of salt.
Once the mix comes to a boil add the flour and stir with a wooden spoon until the dough comes together and pulls away from the sides of the pot.
Turn off the heat and transfer the dough to a stand mixer with the whisk attachment.
Allow the dough to cool for 5 minutes, this will ensure the eggs won't cook when added.
Turn the mixer on medium-high speed and add the eggs one at a time, allowing them to fully incorporate before adding the next one. The dough will become soft and smooth once all the eggs are added.
Turn off the mixer and fold in the three kinds of cheese.
Scoop the dough into a piping bag fitted with a medium-sized star tip.
Set the dough in the fridge and allow it to cool for 20–30 minutes.
While you wait for the dough to cool, preheat an oven to 425°F.
Pipe the dough out onto a lined tray about one inch apart.
Place them into the oven, turn the oven down to 375°F, and bake for 20–25 minutes. The gougères will be puffed and golden brown.
Remove them from the oven and cool them to room temperature.
For the filling
In a mixing bowl, combine the pepper puree with the crème fraîche and season to taste. Note, if the mix becomes too runny after mixing, place it in the fridge and allow it to set again.
Finishing the plate
Put the pepper filling into a piping bag fitted with a small-sized piping tip.
Use the tip of a small knife to make a small hole in the bottom of each gougère and pipe some of the filling inside.
Garnish the top of each with a dollop of the filling, a sprinkle of espelette, and fresh cilantro. Enjoy!