Italian Souffle

Serves 4-6
You'll Need: olive oil spray, 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour, 1 cup organic milk (1%, 2% or whole is fine), pinch kosher salt, pinch freshly grated black pepper, pinch freshly grated nutmeg, 4 large egg yolks (room temperature), 7 large egg whites (room temperature)**, 3/4 tsp cream of tartar, 1 cup organic baby spinach (rinsed, dried, stems removed), 1 tsp fresh thyme (stems removed), 3/4 cup shredded cheese* (recommendation: 1/4 cup Fontina d' Aosta, 1/4 cup Mozzarella di Bufala, 1/4 cup Parmigiano Reggiano), 3 oz prosciutto (sliced thinly)

How to Prepare: Spray a large soufflé baking

dish with the olive oil spray (cover the bottom and sides to avoid sticking). Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F. Using a medium sauce pan, heat the oil and flour. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon until it's well incorporated. It will start to hiss or bubble. Remove from stovetop and add milk, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Return to stove top and whisk until it's boiling (whisk constantly). Remove from heat. Pour a small bit of milk mixture into the heat safe bowl that contains the yolks; mix vigorously to avoid scrambling. Transfer the yolk mixture into the milk mixture and whisk well. This is tempering. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, using the whisk attachment, add all 7 egg whites. Whisk until you have soft peaks. Add the cream of tartar. Continue whisking until you have firm peaks. Using a spatula, transfer the yolk milk mixture to a large, wide preparation bowl. Add the spinach, thyme and cheeses. Lightly
stir together. Whisk in 1/3 of the egg whites (to lighten the mixture). Carefully fold in the remaining 2/3 of the egg whites. Evenly layer the prosciutto on the bottom of the soufflé dish. Carefully pour the soufflé over the prosciutto
into the soufflé dish. Place the soufflé dish on a parchment lined baking sheet. Place on the rack just below center of the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes. The top will be lightly browned. When you remove the soufflé, it will jiggle slightly in the middle. Let it cool slightly and spoon out with a large serving spoon. Note, soufflés have a tendency to drop quickly. They are meant to be eaten right out of the oven. Don't plan to place this in the oven until your entire party is there and ready to eat. Enjoy with a glass of white wine. Salute!

* Okay to use any blend of semi hard, shreddable cheeses that you have on hand. My recommendation of 3 Italian cheeses is noted above.
** Try to gently crack your eggs individually in a bowl. Using your fingers, gently pick up the egg yolk and allow the remaining egg white to seep through your fingers. This allows you to retain the majority of the egg white. If you do the transfer in the shell method, you end up losing a large portion of your egg white.

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