Recipe: Cheese Gougères
These light and airy cheesy puffs are so impressive for how little effort they take. Mustard powder is the traditional seasoning here, but the dough is a great base to explore flavors using other mustards or mustard-based seasonings.
Combine water, butter, salt, and choice of seasoning in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Once butter has melted, remove pan from heat and add flour. Stir vigorously until the mixture resembles mashed potatoes. Return pan to medium-low heat and stir for 3 to 5 min. to dry out the dough. Dough should glisten and be thick enough to hold a spoon upright.
Transfer dough to the bowl of a stand mixer. (The following steps can also be done with a hand mixer or by hand with a stiff spatula.) Beat dough on medium-low speed for 1 min. until it stops steaming and is just warm to the touch. Beat each egg into dough, one at a time, until smooth. Scrape down sides of bowl as needed. Dough should come together in a smooth, creamy batter. Beat in cheese until just combined.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Scoop rounded tablespoons of dough and place them about an inch apart onto parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Bake 5 min. then turn heat down to 350 degrees and bake another 20 to 25 min., rotating sheets once about halfway through. The finished gougères should be puffed, golden, dry to the touch, and feel light and hollow when picked up. Transfer sheets to a cooling rack.
Serve warm or at room temperature. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator and warm in oven before serving. Can be frozen for up to 3 months.