Do you believe in serendipity? Lately I have had a weirdly large amount of serendipitous things happen in my life, in terms of coincidences and crazy timing that have pretty much blown me away…nothing overly dramatic or major, just lots of small good things happening in synch. Any waaaay this is a bloody good example of that. I serve Castello blue cheese with grainy crackers as part of the nibbles offering whenever I have friends around for casual drinks, and I mean every time, because the flavour is so lusciously delicate yet distinctive and the texture so creamy and perfect that everybody loves it. Well a couple of weeks ago I was contacted by the lovely people at Castello, unaware of my secret obsession, to ask whether I was keen to work with them on their new product Castello Marquis – well yesssss! So they sent me some product to play with and this is what I came up with – mega indulgent, surprisingly easy to make, double-baked souffles. The cheese itself has this luscious rich, buttery taste with a little oomph. The pretty orange rind contributes some of the earthy tropical flavour, as does the albino blue mould inside. The flavours are distinctive yet not over-powering so I wanted to pair with, rather than overwhelm them, so apart from the lovely cheese the souffles just have a few hints of happy partners – soft sweet onions and leeks. The recipe is super straight forward and so easy – and perfect for entertaining as you can make the souffles up to 3 days before, then do the double baking bit (where they puff back up in golden glory), just before serving. If you wanted to give them a little extra surprise, fruity magic I would also suggest popping 1/2 teaspoon of quince or other fruit paste on the souffle before topping with cheese and re-baking…phwaor!
Before I forget the good people at Castello have also supplied me with 2x $50 Castello premium range cheese vouchers to GIVE AWAY! All you need to do is leave a comment below telling me which is your favourite recipe on the blog so far – you have many years worth of recipes to choose from, good luck! Winners will be chosen this Sunday and announced on the blog Monday morning, 27th August, vouchers are valid until 31st December 2018 and can be redeemed at all good supermarkets New Zealand-wide.
Right then, in other news, it is basically business as usual again. I had a great night on Saturday, watching the rugby (awesome ABs) and testing recipes on my willing friends, (it is always a bonus when work and my social life crossover) and have pretty much been flat out with work in general. This week I have been working on Cuisine, next week it is Dish and I have squeaked a few recipes for Fairfax in there too. Other than quiz night and walking first thing every morning I have been essentially house-bound. (You’re probably not interested, but I walk 8-10km every day with three (unintentional) styles/speeds depending on the music I’m listening too: late for a meeting, late for a plane and NY fashion week runway – bahahahaha). Meanwhile Hoob is still cranking for his final semester in Welly, with his 21st birthday just weeks away now. I can’t wait to head down in October and hang out with him, the gorgeous Raven, and a few of his mates! Pog is into the final stretch of his grand tour and arrives home from Greece at the end of next week. It’ll be wonderful to have him in my clutches for a few days before he too heads down to Welly…it does occur to me sometimes that maybe I’m living in the wrong city!? So, time to get up, the rain has stopped and my walk beckons. Have a great day – and do try the souffles, I promise they are way easier to make than you might think.
15 grams butter
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1/2 small leek, trimmed and chopped
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
80ml white wine
120 ml cream
1 small clove garlic, crushed
1 ½ cups whole milk
1 bay leaf
4 tbsp plain flour
75 grams Castello Marquis, chopped
4 eggs separated
6 x 1 cup capacity ramekins
baking oil spray
150grams Castello Marquis
Melt the first lot of butter in a medium frying pan, add the onion and leek, season well with salt and pepper and cook over a medium/gentle heat for 10 minutes. Add the wine, cook for 2 minutes then add the first lot of cream and cook a further 10-12 minutes until basically all of the liquid is absorbed. Leave to cool for 15 minutes then whiz in a food processor until smoothish.
For the bechamel, melt the next lot of butter in a medium pot and whisk in the flour. Whisking continuously pour in half of the milk. Once it thickens add the remainder of the milk, keep cooking and whisking whisking until thick and smooth. (This can also be made in the microwave by following the same steps). Stir in the chopped Castello Marquis, whisk well until it has melted in and remove from the heat. Allow to cool for 10 minutes then whisk in the egg yolks and onion and leek puree, then set aside again to cool while the oven heats to 180˚C.
Lightly spray and line the bases and sides of 6 x 1 cup capacity ramekins with baking paper and put the ramekins in a large roasting dish. Whisk the egg whites with a pinch of salt, to firm peaks. Add 1/3 of the egg whites to the leek and egg mixture, folding in to loosen slightly, then add the rest of the egg whites, folding in gently until incorporated.
Divide the mixture between the prepared ramekins. Pour boiling hot water into the roasting dish, coming half way up the sides of the ramekins and bake for 25-30 minutes until risen and lightly golden. (They will probably be madly exploding, but don’t worry this is normal!). Remove the ramekins from the roasting dish and allow to cool for an hour, then run a small knife around the inside of the ramekins to release the soufflés slightly. Tip the soufflés out and place upside down in a shallow baking dish (or dishes), and leave to cool completely.
Half an hour before serving put the 150grams of Castello Marquis in the freezer. Preheat the oven to 200C. Slice the Castello Marquis into 6 rounds, and place each one on the top of a soufflé. Pour over the remaining cream and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the soufflés are lightly puffed again, richly golden and delicious. Serve with a small bitter green salad.
Beef rendang is by far my absolute favourite curry now…I struggle to make anything else and my mum and dad who don’t even really enjoy curry much absolutely love it too!
Thanks Amber – it’s my favourite curry too! 🙂
These look unreal! I love Castello, can’t wait to try… my mum just taught me how to make a soufflé. I can’t go past your classic lemon tart recipe, it is SO delicious and elegant and I have used it to impress people many times! Thank you for all your beautiful recipes.
Yay re the lemon tart, I still make it often too Ariane 🙂
Hi Sarah, what a hard choice with all your amazing recipes – especially this cheesy looking goodness! Hubby and I do really your Shakshuka recipe both as a lazy brunch or delicious dinner dish. Thanks 🙂
Awesome! Thanks Selena 🙂
Hi Sarah, I am so making these this weekend for friends for the rugby! How funny that you do blue costello as a staple with friends as I do too. I have made so many of your recipes and they never fail to impress. However, my go to is the Lamb Salad with Feta and lentils etc….OMG it blows my mind! Keep up the fantastic work 🙂
Oh yay I’m glad you picked that salad – it’s a favourite of mine too…enjoy the rugby!
Where to start? The recent slow-cooked beef cheek ragu has hooked me on beef cheeks; zucchini, mozzarella pizzas gave me back my mojo; retro night potato gratin is my ‘go to’ potato dish – but far and away my total favourite would be the chicken curry with garlic naan – it surpasses my butter chicken which everyone has adored for a number of years!! I make this curry every month and take any left-overs to work for lunch – I have had people coming to the staff room asking for the recipe.
Cheesy goodness coming up this weekend!!
That’s fabulous – thanks so much Ali, and I’m so thrilled you like that chicken curry!
Whooop whoooop! Congratulations Ali – you are one of the lucky winners of a $50 castello premium range voucher 🙂 Can you please email me at st***************@ic****.com with your address details so that I can arrange for the vouchers to be sent out. Well done!
Oh Sarah you make all food scrumptious!! I drool over your beautiful photo shoots …every one as mouthwatering as the next! Including thus Castello Marquis double baked shuffle . Not easy to pick favourites but Zucchini & Pea Fritters are perfect for using up home grown zucchini and I love them with my fave salads -Salmon & Asparagus Fennel salad and Raw Beetroot & Carrot. Followed by a sweet treat of Christmas Choc Brownie and a home brewed coffee ☺ Thank you for tantalising our tastebuds!
Thanks so much Marisa – it’s always my total pleasure! 🙂
Yum, those souffles look amazing! Favourite recipe from your blog – well, that’s a bit like choosing a favourite child and that;’s simply not fair, haha.
But if pressed, I’d pick the simple but impressive roast side of salmon with pomegranate glaze. Delish and always wins hearts.
As for Castello, the blue is a guilty pleasure and it never ceases to amaze me how easily I can get through one of those half-moon beauties with a nibble here, and a nibble there….
Thanks Jody – and yup, I totally feel you on that nibbling business!
Ummmm, YUM! This looks incredible. My fav of yours would have to be the zucchini and feta fritters, because not only is it delish and easy, but it was in hunting for a recipe of that sort that I first found your lovely site! Also all your vegetarian stuff… all inspiring and makes me want to get cooking!
I’m so glad Rebekah – and I’m hoping to do more vego stuff going forward!
Your website has become my “go-to” for lots of my cooking, you just seem to hit the spot with so many things. It is impossible to choose just one favourite recipe, but I will mention a couple, or so. The mushrooms in pastry is totally yum, so is the slow cooked beef cheeks ragu, your blueberry breakfast muffins are superb, the oaty caramel slice is wicked and the chicken curry and yoghurt naan is completely fab.
Keep it up, I love your posts !
Thanks so much Claire – a great selection!
Whooop whoooop! Congratulations Claire – you are one of the lucky winners of a $50 castello premium range voucher 🙂 Can you please email me at st***************@ic****.com with your address details so that I can arrange for the vouchers to be sent out. Well done!
Hi Claire – just checking you received my note about winning the vouchers – are you able to email me your contact details at st***************@ic****.com – thanks so much! 🙂
I’m always thrilled to receive your emails saying there’s a new post as I love your writing, your recipes and your photography. You’re one talented, beautiful woman.
I have your book Coming Unstuck and love it. There are many favourite recipes, but to pick one, it’d have to be the Roast Side of Salmon – it’s so easy and oh so beautiful and delicious. (I’ll definitely be trying some of the recipes others have commented on – thanks everyone.)
Oh yay I’m so glad you’re enjoying the book – thanks Suz!
To stay on the souffle theme, it would have to be your easy twice baked chocolate souffles with whiskey chocolate sauce, so delicious for special occasions.
I’m looking forward to trying the cheese soufflés out as soon as I get back to my wonderful Kenwood mixer, sadly my tiny Auckland apartment cannot fit “Kenny” so I have to visit mum to get my mixer fix 😉
I hope you and “Kenny” can be reunited soon!
Love so many of your recipes and am always sending them onto others to make. If I had to pick one particular favourite which I go back to often it would be your mushrooms in pastry (en croute) SO delicious! (Thank you for your lovely blog and stories – your photography is incredible)
Thanks Sandra, the photography is really important to me, so I’m thrilled you like it 🙂
The pulled Lamb, Rosemary and Cheese Pie is a favourite in our house! I cannot wait to try these soufflés 🙂
Thanks Kiz – let me know how you like them!
Hi Sarah…I ‘m also going with the roast side of salmon…never fails to impress so a huge hit !!!! I took a friend to your “Dish”…Cooking and Presentation class…absolutely loved you ..learnt heaps and the food .. not to mention the wine…was fantastic..promptly bought the book to gift to my friend and ..am not proud ..kept it for myself with no regrets ..Haha…Sue
Oh thanks so much Sue – and I’m so glad you enjoyed the demo 🙂
Hi Sarah – I have made many of your recipes and enjoy all the flavours – tonight in a hurry and made your garlic and chilli pasta – who knew the simplest ingredients would make such a delicious meal in 9 minutes – thank you .
Thanks so much Celia – simple can often be best!
I (and the boys) love many of your recipes, but for it’s sheer beautiful simplicity, speed to put together, and sense of comfort yet powerpacked flavour (with a good glass of red) is the garlic & chilli pasta is impossible to pass up… we last ate it tonight…
How funny you write of souffles…. I had just flipped thru the book and landed on making the twice baked cauliflower souffles for entree this Sat night, looks devine!!
Fantastic! I’m so glad you enjoy the garlic & chilli pasta – I love it too 🙂
Have made many dishes from your blog, also love your recipes in cuisine magazine. Favourite is your slow cooked lamb shoulder served with roasted tomatoes with olives, currants, feta. Really simple to make, everyone’s loves it, had many great evenings sharing it with family and friends. Thanks Catherine
Oh great, so nice to hear about one of my Cuisine recipes, thanks Catherine!
Your recipes are all so good but one of the more recent ones I’ve made and really enjoyed was your self-saucing ginger, date and walnut pudding.
Thanks so much Rebecca – I’m glad you enjoyed it! 🙂
Wow Sarah – these soufflés look INCREDIBLE!! I never met a Castello cheese I didn’t love – cannot wait to try this recipe. One of my favourite recipes of yours is an oldie but such a goodie, Salted Caramel Cheesecake Mousse…so easy yet impressive and tastes phenomenal. Wins compliments every time. Love your fantastic blog and please keep us updated re a book reprint!
Thanks so much – and good news on the reprint – it is under way and I will be announcing the on-sale date very soon! 🙂
Got in touch with Castello vs FB.
This cheese is unavailable in NZ or Australia. Please advise what cheese to substitute?
Hi Shelley, hmm that’s strange! You could make it with whatever your favourite creamy cheese is: brie, camembert or a soft blue would all work well 🙂
Very efficiently written story. It will be beneficial to everyone who utilizes it, including yours truly :). Keep doing what you are doing – looking forward to more posts.
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