Gruyere Cheese Puffs (Gougères)

By Raybird. 
Servings: 8 (24 puffs). Non-Vegetarian (Contains egg) 

These little cheese puffs, or Gougeres, are made with a savoury choux pastry dough, more commonly used to make eclairs and profiteroles, with the addition of freshly ground black pepper, and our Lustenberger 1862 vegetarian Gruyere Cheese from Le Superbe. The exterior is crisp, while the interior is almost hollow, trapping the delicious aroma of the cheese and overwhelming your senses when you pop one in your mouth. Serve them warm out of the oven as an appetiser, on a cheese platter, with your morning eggs, or simply as a snack with a knob of butter.


Butter, cold, cubed 6 tbsp (90 gm)
Milk 1 cup (244 gm)
Ishka Farms Sea Salt pinch
All-purpose Flour 1 cup (125 gm)
Eggs 6 each (5 plus 1 for egg wash)
Lustenberger 1862 Gruyere Cheese, finely grated 1 pkt (120 gm for the batter, 30 gm for the top of the choux)
Black Pepper, freshly ground To taste


1. Grate the Gruyere cheese, keep half a cup aside for garnishing the puffs. For the egg wash, combine one egg with one tbsp of water and mix well. Preheat oven to 190C.

2. Combine the cold butter cubes, milk and a pinch of sea salt in saucepan and heat over medium heat. As soon as the butter has melted and it comes to a boil add the flour all at once. Reduce the heat to low and mix with a spatula until the flour absorbs all the liquid and comes together into a dough, it won't take long.

3. While on a very low heat, continue mixing the dough in the pan for a few minutes to dry it out until it is one cohesive ball and has a shiny surface. This is important for a crispy puff. Remove the dough into a bowl and mix it until it is completely cool to the touch.

4. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing and incorporating each egg into the dough before adding the next. After all 5 eggs are added, it should be a smooth batter. Add the grated Gruyere cheese and grind some black pepper into the batter to taste. Mix well.

5. Fill your choux batter in a piping bag with a large piping tip. Line your baking tray with parchment paper and lightly grease it with oil to prevent sticking (or use a silicon baking mat). Pipe out your choux into equal sized mounds, leaving at least an inch of empty space all around. Brush each choux with the egg wash and top with a little bit of the extra grated Gruyere cheese. Depending on the size of your oven and number of trays you can fit, you may have to bake them in two batches like we did. 

6. They will take about 35 minutes to bake. Do not open the oven for at least the first 30 minutes as they will deflate. If they are becoming too dark brown, reduce the temperature to 170C and continue cooking so the inside of the puffs are fully cooked. After 35 minutes, or when they are done, turn the oven off and leave them inside to cool slowly and dry out. This will harden their shell and prevent them from getting soggy.

7. Eat immediately. They are at their peak deliciousness straight out of the oven. If you have some left over, store them in the fridge and reheat in the oven before eating. Enjoy!