Savory Gougères

Recipe by chef Brian Polcyn, featured in the Savor Detroit cookbook

Yield: 4 dozen

Gougère Shells

  • 1 cup skim milk
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 ¾ ounces all-purpose flour
  • 4 large eggs


  1. Preheat oven to 425 F.
  2. In a sauce pot, bring the milk, butter, and salt to a boil. Whisk in the flour and remove from heat. Work mixture together and return to heat. Continue working the mixture until all flour is incorporated and dough forms a ball.
  3. Transfer mixture into bowl of a 5-quart standing mixer with a paddle attachment. Let it cool for a few minutes.
  4. Begin to paddle the mixture at the lowest speed and add the eggs one at a time, making sure the first egg is completely incorporated before adding in the next egg. You should end up with a smooth dough.
  5. Prepare a piping bag with a round tip, and deposit the dough into the bag. Quickly begin to pipe golf ball–sized rounds about 2 inches apart onto parchment-lined sheet pans.
  6. Cook for 10­–12 minutes, and then reduce the temperature to 350 F. Bake for 10 more minutes or until golden brown.

Mornay Sauce
Yield: 2 cups


  • 2 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • ¼ tablespoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • 2 ounces grated Gruyere cheese, or other local alpine cheese


  1. In a medium sauce pot over medium-high heat, melt the butter and add flour. Cook, and be sure to stir constantly until the roux is pale yellow and frothy; this should take about a minute or two. Do not allow the roux to turn brown or this will discolor your sauce.
  2. Begin to slowly whisk in the milk to the roux, and continue to whisk until the sauce begins to thicken. Bring the sauce to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Season the sauce with the salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Simmer for 2–3 more minutes. Then, add in the grated cheese and whisk until melted.

Assembly of Dish

  1. Place the Mornay sauce into a piping bag that is fitted with a small, round pastry tip.
  2. Poke a small hole with a knife on the flat bottom of the gougère and then proceed to fill the gougère with the Mornay sauce. Repeat until all the gougères are full.
  3. Before serving, place the filled gougères on a sheet tray lined with parchment paper. Heat for 5 minutes in a 375 F oven. Serve warm.

Enjoy this gourmet appetizer with a glass of Pinot Grigio.

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