These amazing cheese puffs are irresistible. Serve them with cocktails, as is often suggested, and you may forget all about dinner. This is a vegan adaptation of David Lebovitz’s gougères recipe.
Makes about 30 gougères
2 Tbsp flaxseed meal
6 Tbsp water
1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3 Tbs vegan butter (I used Miyoko’s European Style Cultured Vegan Butter)*
1/2 cup water
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
3 oz vegan cheese, grated or coarsely chopped (I have used either a 1/2 wheel of Miyoko’s Aged English Sharp Farmhouse or Sundried Tomato Garlic cheese and both versions are delicious)
1 Tbsp chopped fresh herbs such as rosemary, thyme, chives, or parsley (optional)
Assemble all the ingredients and have them ready before you start cooking.
Preheat oven to 425.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Make vegan eggs by combining 2 tablespoons of flaxseed meal with 6 tablespoons of water in a small bowl. Stir a few times and set aside. Stir occasionally as you go on with the recipe.
Combine the flour and baking powder in a small bowl and set aside.
Heat 1/2 cup of water, vegan butter, salt, and cayenne pepper in a saucepan over medium high heat until the butter is melted and the mixture comes to a boil.
Add the flour and baking powder all at once and stir vigorously until the mixture is smooth and shiny and a skin forms on the bottom of the pan. This will take about 5 minutes of steady stirring. Adjust heat as needed so the pan stays hot but the mixture does not burn.
Mix in the vegan cheese and herbs (if using), stirring continually until well combined.
Remove the saucepan from the heat and let the mixture cool off for a few minutes, stirring occasionally.
Once the mixture has cooled down a bit, mix in about half of the flaxseed eggs while stirring well to incorporate. Once completely absorbed, mix in the remaining flaxseed eggs, stirring until completely incorporated.
Transfer the mixture to a pastry bag with a 1/2 inch plain tip or, if you don’t have one, into a plastic freezer bag with one corner snipped off.
Pipe dough onto the parchment-lined baking sheet into 1 inch rounds, spaced an inch apart. The recipe will make about 30 puffs.
Bake for 5 minutes at 425 and then turn the oven down to 375 and bake for an additional 20 to 25 minutes, or until the gougères are nicely browned.
Gougères are delicious when eaten hot from the oven. If you have any left over, they can be frozen or just re-heated in a 350 oven for a few minutes.
*Miyokos Kitchen cheeses and butter are widely available in grocery stores and health food stores.