Lena is an active old woman living on the west coast of sweden. She has been a vegetarian for many years.
The dish that Lena shared with me is a ground elder soufflé. The recipe is adapted from her mother's soufflé
recipe. It was a classic at home when she was a kid. Kale or spinach soufflé, fish soufflé or even a sweet version
with dried plums and almonds could often be found on the family table. The soufflé was a common way to transform
any leftovers into something tasty and somehow magic because of the way it raises and double in size during
baking time. The hardest part of the recipe is the timing : the soufflé doesn't wait and should be eaten directly
when taken out of the oven.
ABOUT GROUND ELDER
Ground elder (Aegopodium podagraria), also called bishop's weed is a perennial plant from the carrot family
that grows in shady places. It has been introduced in Northern Europe by monks who used it both as a medicine
and a spring leaf vegetable (such as spinach). It is a strong and invasive plant that can easily be found in gardens,
forest, parks and cities. The leaves should be picked young, before the first flowers have appeared. They are tender
with a mild flavor and can be eaten in salads, pies, soups, pesto etc.
— SERVES 4
1 - Rinse ground elder leaves. Cook them in boiling water for a few minutes.
Drain and set aside to cool.
2 - Melt the butter In a large pot aver medium heat. Add flour and whisk to combine.
Add oat milk and continue whisking until all lumps are gone.
Stir in salt, pepper, nutmeg and paprika. Remove from heat and reserve.
3 - Preheat oven to 175C°.
4 - Separate eggs whites from yolks. Beat egg whites by hand until stiff.
5 - Add eggs yolks to the pot with the sauce. Whisk to combine.
Roughly chop blanched ground elder and add them to the pot together with
grinded cheese. Stir to combine. Taste and add salt or pepper if needed.
Gently fold egg whites into the batter.
6 - Butter a soufflé pan or a heat-proof ceramic bowl and pour in the batter.
Bake for about 50 minutes (do not open the oven during baking time !).
Remove from oven and serve directly with a green salad.
8 CUPS YOUNG LEAVES GROUND ELDER
2 TBSP ORGANIC BUTTER
2 TBSP FLOUR (SPELT, BUCKWHEAT
OR GLUTEN-FREE MIX)
6 ORGANIC EGGS
3 DL OAT MILK
100 G MATURED CHEESE, GRINDED
1/2 TSP FRESHLY GROUND NUTMEG
1/2 TSP PAPRIKA
SEA SALT AND BLACK PEPPER TO TASTE