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Twice-baked tomato and feta soufflés

Serves 6
40g (1½ oz) butter, plus extra for greasing        
3 eggs, separated
40g (1½ oz) plain flour                         
25g (1 oz) Parmesan
300ml (½ pint) milk                                         
500ml (18 fl oz) tomato passata, seasoned with a few drops of Worcester sauce
salt and freshly ground black pepper                
100g (4 oz) feta cheese, cut into cubes 
50g (2 oz) sun-blushed tomatoes, chopped                  
1-2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives                                                                      

[S&M would serve this with a little herb salad and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.]

Generously butter and base-line 6 or 7 ramekins.  Preheat the oven to 220ºC/425ºF/Gas 7.

1       Melt the butter in a generously sized saucepan, remove from the heat and blend in the flour.  Return to the heat, and cook the roux for 30 seconds, stirring continuously.  Add the milk bit by bit and bring to the boil, stirring constantly.  Simmer until the sauce is thick and smooth.

2       Remove the pan from the heat and beat in some seasoning, the feta and drained sun-dried tomatoes.  When these are well incorporated, stir in the egg yolks.

3       Whisk the egg whites until stiff, and stir 1 tablespoon into the sauce to loosen the mixture.  Carefully fold in the remaining egg white.  Spoon into the prepared ramekins, place them in a small roasting tin, and pour boiling water into the tin to come half way up the ramekins.  [This is a ‘bain-marie’.]

4       Cook in the bain-marie in the preheated oven for 10 minutes, then turn them around and cook for a further 8-10 minutes until golden and springy to the touch.  Leave to stand for 5 minutes in the ramekin dishes to shrink back.

5       Butter a shallow gratin dish (large enough to hold the little soufflés so that they just do not touch) and sprinkle over half of the Parmesan.  Pour the seasoned passata into the gratin dish.  Run the blade of a small palette knife around the edges of the soufflés, unmould them carefully, and put them into the gratin dish.  Sprinkle the remaining Parmesan over the surface.

6       Return to the oven for about 10-15 minutes until golden and bubbling.  Scatter over the chives to garnish.

cook now, eat later

Up to 48 hours ahead, turn the cooked soufflés out on to the buttered and Parmesan-sprinkled dish.  Don’t sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan or pour in the passata yet.  Cover with foil and keep in the fridge. 
Continue as from step 5.
Freeze the wrapped, cooked soufflés for up to 1 month.  Thaw at room temperature for about 6 hours.  Reheat as from step 5.

Recipe From Mary Berry’s Book
’Cook now, Eat Later’

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