Asparagus Soufflé with Dill Sauce

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3 Tbs. butter
4 Tbs. flour
1½ cups milk
6 egg yolks
1 Tbs. chopped fresh parsley
1 Tbs. chopped chives
salt and pepper
4 to 5 Tbs. grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup cooked asparagus, cut into small pieces
pinch of cream of tartar
8 egg whites

Melt the butter and add the flour, stirring until smooth. Wisk in the milk slowly, until you have a smooth, thick sauce. Remove the pan from the heat and, whisking carefully, add 1 egg yolk at a time until they are all in the sauce. Add the seasonnings, the cheese, and the pieces of asparagus. Be certain that none of asparagus pieces are from the tough ends of the stalks.

Add a pinch of cream of tartar and a little salt to the egg whites (which should be at room temperature), and beat them with a whisk until they are stiff but not dry. Mix a few heaping soonfuls of the egg whites into the sauce to make it somewhat ligheter, then fold in the rest with great care. Pile it all gently into the prepared soufflé dish and place it carefully in the center of a preheated 350-degree oven. It should bake about 35 to 40 minutes, or until it has risen high above the dish and does not wobble when tapped.

Serve the soufflé immediately out of the oven, and with a hot Dill Sauce for a truly fantastic combination.


Dill sauce:
3 Tbs. flour
3 Tbs. butter
1 cup hot light vegetable broth
1 cup milk
2 Tbs. chopped dried dill weed or 3 to 4 Tbs. chopped fresh dill
2 to 3 Tbs. good dry sherry
sal and pepper

Make a roux with the butter and flour, then add the hot broth and stir with a whisk until smooth. Continue stirring while you add the milk and let it cook over very low heat, or in the top of a double boiler, for a few minutes. Add the dill weed and the sherry, season with salt and pepper, and cook gently about 10 minutes, stirring often.

Serve hot in a sauceboat.

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