“I brought the recipe for these gougeres back from a trip to Nice, France. The original called for Gruyere cheese, but I found that Gouda is a more budget-friendly alternative. These puffs are a wonderful bite-sized treat. If you have leftovers, float a few of these gems on a bowl of soup in place of croutons.” —Lily Julow, Lawrenceville, Georgia
Preheat oven to 425°. In a large heavy saucepan, bring the first 4 ingredients to a rolling boil. Remove from heat; add all flour and beat until blended. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring vigorously until mixture pulls away from sides of pan and forms a ball, about 3 minutes.
Transfer to a large bowl; beat 1 minute to cool slightly. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition until smooth. Continue beating until shiny. Beat in cheese, chives and nutmeg. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls 2 in. apart onto parchment-lined baking sheets.
For topping, whisk together egg and water; brush lightly over tops. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake until puffed, firm and golden brown, 20-25 minutes. Serve warm.
Freeze option: Freeze unbaked puffs on parchment-lined baking sheets until firm; transfer to resealable freezer containers and return to freezer. To use, place frozen puffs on parchment-lined baking sheets. Top and bake as directed, increasing time by 2-3 minutes.
Test Kitchen Tips
Be patient when stirring in the flour. It will take a few minutes for the dough to come together and form a ball.
The pastries will puff during baking then deflate slightly, which is normal.
These bake up golden brown on the outside while the inside is tender and slightly moist.