Asparagus-Goat Cheese Soufflés


1 bunch(es) (about 1 pound) asparagus, trimmed
1 1/2 cup(s) nonfat milk
2 tablespoon(s) butter
3 tablespoon(s) all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon(s) coarse salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon(s) freshly ground pepper
Pinch of ground nutmeg
4 large egg yolks, at room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoon(s) truffle oil or any other oil your prefer
8 large egg whites, at room temperature
1 cup(s) crumbled or diced aged goat cheese or Manchego cheese


Fill a large skillet with 1 inch of hot water and bring to a boil. Add asparagus. Partially cover and cook the asparagus until tender-crisp, about 3 minutes. Drain; refresh under cold water. Blot the asparagus dry with a clean kitchen towel, then cut into 1/2-inch slices.

Position rack on lowest level of oven; preheat to 375 degrees F. Coat six 10-ounce ramekins with nonstick cooking spray. Place ramekins on a large rimmed baking sheet.

Heat milk in a small saucepan over medium heat until hot. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Whisk in flour and cook, whisking often, for 2 minutes. Turn off heat and slowly whisk in hot milk. Return the heat to medium-low and continue whisking until the mixture is thickened, 3 to 4 minutes. Whisk in 1/4 teaspoon salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Remove from the heat and whisk in 4 egg yolks, one at a time, and truffle oil, if using. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and stir in the asparagus and cheese.

Place 8 egg whites in a large bowl. Beat with an electric mixer, slowly increasing the speed, until they begin to foam. Add the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and continue to beat until the whites hold their shape; do not overbeat. (You'll know they are ready when you lift the beaters out and the peak doesn't flop over.)

Using a rubber spatula, gently stir one-third of the whites into the egg yolk mixture to lighten it. Gently fold in the remaining egg whites just until blended. Divide the soufflé mixture among the prepared ramekins, filling them almost to the top. (Discard any leftover mixture or prepare another ramekin for another soufflé.)

Bake the soufflés on the bottom rack until puffy and golden and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center registers 145 degrees F, 20 to 25 minutes. Do not overcook — the centers will look soft.

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