How to: Spinach Soufflé


1/4 cup each margarine and all-purpose flour
3/4 cup 2% milk
1/16 tsp. black pepper
Dash of salt
1/2 lb. American cheese slices
1 (10–oz.) pkg. frozen chopped spinach, thawed* and well
6 crisply cooked bacon slices, crumbled
2 Tbsp. finely chopped onion
4 eggs, separated, saving whites and yolks**
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar


Prepare a white sauce by melting the margarine over medium-high heat then stirring in the flour; stir for 30 seconds then gradually add the milk, pepper and salt. Stir until thickened. Add cheese; stir until melted. Remove from heat. Stir in well-drained spinach, bacon and onion. Gradually add slightly beaten yolks; cool. Beat whites and cream of tartar until stiff peaks form. Fold spinach mixture into egg whites. Turn mixture into a two quart soufflé dish. Bake at 325° F for one hour. Check after 45 minutes; cover lightly with foil if browning too quickly. Serve immediately. Serves eight. Make ahead tip: Prepare recipe through addition of egg yolks then cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Bring to room temperature before folding in the egg whites.

Preparation tips:
* To thaw the box frozen spinach, punch a hole in the corner then microwave the box on medium power until you can squeeze the box. Squeeze to drain water out of the open corner, then break open the box and press dry with paper towels.

**Room-temperature egg whites will gain more volume when beaten and help your soufflé rise. To bring eggs to room temperature before separating the yolks from the whites, set the eggs out on the counter for 15 minutes or submerge (in the shell) in a bowl of lukewarm (not hot) water for five minutes. To achieve a puffy soufflé, the egg whites must be completely free of any yolk. Individually separate the eggs before adding the white to the mixing bowl. If any specks of yolk get in the white, throw away the white, use in other cooking or freeze for later use; clean the bowl with soap and water then start over.

1. Melt margarine over medium-high heat then stir in flour.
2. Add milk, pepper and salt.
3. Stir in cheese, adding gradually, working in a few slices at a time until melted and smooth.
4. Stir in well-drained spinach, bacon and onion.
5. Briskly stir in egg yolks.
6. Beat egg whites to stiff peaks before folding into spinach mixture.
7. Turn into soufflé dish.
8. Baked soufflé is puffed and lightly browned.