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Gougères {with Guinness & Cheddar}

March 13, 2012

I had some leftover cheddar from making mac and cheese last week, so I thought I’d make some gougères, a.k.a. French cheese puffs or “goo chairs” if you are my husband (he and French words do not mix). These gougères are a little special because there’s Guinness beer in the batter.

The Guinness in these puffs pairs beautifully with the cheddar, but they don’t particularly taste like Guinness. It’s more like a wonderful secret ingredient that helps balance everything out, giving these puffs a certain je ne sais quoi.


While I was taking some close up shots of the ingredients, I thought I’d take a step back and also let you get a better idea of what my kitchen looks like. I live in a rental right now, so who knows how long I’ll be cooking here.

A few things in this part of my kitchen that I love: the open shelves filled with dry ingredients, the vintage brass owls that perch on those shelves, my cookbook stand and food scale (well-loved gifts from my in-laws), the pink ceramic knife in my knife block (a gift from my friend Katie), and the ceramic jars with wood lids (the large one is filled with tea, the small one with treats for my pups).

I love seeing other people’s kitchens, so maybe I’ll do another post showing you the rest of mine someday. Remind me if I forget.


Anyways, back to gougères. One thing I will say about these, is that they are best when eaten warm and right out of the oven, so bake them off when you plan to eat them and no sooner.

Lucky for us, gougères can be assembled ahead of time, frozen, and then baked off whenever. If you aren’t going to eat them right away, all you need to do is get a batch ready and instead of putting the tray in the oven, put it in the freezer for about 30 minutes, until the puffs have frozen, and then transfer them to a freezer bag. From there they can go right from the freezer to the oven when you need them—just bake for a couple of extra minutes.

I baked these before my husband came home from work yesterday. We paired them with some wine and had ourselves a nice little after-work/pre-dinner snack.

Gougères {with Guinness and Cheddar}
Adapted from 101 Cookbooks

Make sure your ingredients are measured out and ready to go before you start this recipe. You don’t want to be measuring flour or grating cheese at the moments you are supposed to be adding them. Also, it’s important that you use large eggs–not extra-large, jumbo, or any other size.

2/3 cup beer or water (I used Guinness)
1/3 cup milk
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, thickly sliced
3/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
scant 1/2 cup (65 grams/2.25 ounces) all-purpose flour
scant 1/2 cup (65 grams/2.25 ounces) whole wheat flour
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 1/4 cup (90 grams/3.25 ounces) sharp white cheddar, grated on a box grater

Heat the oven to 425 degrees and position the oven rack in the top third of the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

In a large thick-bottomed saucepan, bring the beer, milk, butter, and salt just to a boil. Turn the heat down a bit, add the flours to the pot, and stir vigorously for a couple of minutes, until the dough comes together smoothly. Remove the pot from the heat and let the mixture cool for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally to help cool it down (you want the mixture to cool enough so the eggs don’t cook when added).

Add the eggs to the dough, one at a time, stirring vigorously after each addition. Then stir in 1 cup of the cheese. Immediately, spoon the gougère dough onto the prepared baking sheet in heaping tablespoons, leaving 1 1/2 inches between each. Sprinkle the tops with the remaining cheese and bake for 5 minutes, then turn the heat down to 375 degrees and bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, until the gougères have puffed up and are a deep golden color (they need to be browned all the way up the sides to ensure that they don’t deflate). Serve immediately and eat them while they’re still warm.

Makes about 2 dozen 3-inch gougères.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Sarah March 15, 2012 at 1:46 am

These look so beautiful and sound delicious! Random question: Where did you get your ceramic jars with wood lids? I’ve been looking for some forever but just haven’t found the right ones. I love yours!


Connie March 15, 2012 at 7:22 am

Hi Sarah! I got the jars at West Elm quite awhile ago (don’t think they still have them), but I recall seeing some similar jars on Etsy though if you do some digging. Hope you are able to find something you like!


Jenn and Seth (@HomeSkilletCook) March 20, 2012 at 10:42 am

beer and cheese?? this sounds FANTASTIC! definitely bookmarking this :)


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