Dairy First Course

Acorn Squash Soufflé

Squash Souffle.jpg

Makes 4 luncheon servings or 6 first course servings.                                                                 

This soufflé is easy to prepare and has the distinct taste of squash and cheese.  


  • 1 acorn squash, about 2 pounds

  • 1 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus ½ tablespoon for greasing the soufflé dish

  • 4 scallions, including the green part, cut into thin slices

  • 8 ounces cottage cheese, at room temperature

  • 3 large eggs, separated, at room temperature

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 F.

  2. Cut the squash in half and discard the seeds and fiber. Place the halves, skin side down, on a foil-lined pan and bake until the inside is soft, about 40 minutes. Cool.

  3. Butter a 1-quart soufflé dish.

  4. Heat 1 tablespoon of the butter in a small skillet and sauté the scallions.

  5. Scoop the squash from the shells (discarding the shells) and place in a medium bowl. Mash coarsely with a fork, and then add the scallions, egg yolks and cottage cheese. Combine well and season to taste with salt and pepper. THIS PART CAN BE PREPARED AT ANY TIME.

  6. Beat the egg whites at high speed until stiff. With a rubber spatula fold ½ of the whites into the squash mixture to lighten it. Repeat with the remainder of the whites, mixing gently.

  7. Spoon the mixture into the soufflé dish (place a piece of heavy foil in the center of the oven rack, in case of any drippings) and bake for about 35 minutes. The soufflé should be puffy and golden on top (it rises a little).


When a recipe calls for stiffly beaten egg whites the surest way to know whether they are fully beaten is to tilt the bowl. If the egg whites stay when turned over they are ready.  


Broccoli Frittata

Makes 8 first course servings.  Makes 4 luncheon servings.

The calcium rich broccoli combined with the eggs makes for a complete and healthy dish. This frittata is delicious at room temperature, which makes it very easy to serve at any time. 


  • 1 small bunch broccoli, no more than1 pound
  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 scallions including the green parts, thinly sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded, finely chopped (See Note)
  • 5 large eggs, at room temperature.
  • ½ cup tightly packed flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper


  1. Cut broccoli florets into small pieces. Trim the stems, peel and cut into small pieces. Steam all until almost tender, about 2 minutes.
  2. Chop coarsely, in 2 batches, in a food processor. Empty into a bowl.
  3. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a 12 inch non-stick skillet. Add the scallions, garlic and jalapeno. Sautee for 5 minutes over low heat. Add to the broccoli, along with the parsley.
  4. Whisk the eggs in a large bowl. Add the vegetables and season well with salt and pepper.
  5. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in the skillet over medium heat.
  6. Pour in the egg mixture, distributing the vegetables evenly, and reduce the heat to low. Cook the frittata, covered, over medium to low heat for 10-12 minutes. The sides will be set but the top still soft. Shake the pan once or twice during this period.


When seeding jalapeno peppers, I advise wearing thin plastic gloves to avoid irritating your skin or eyes. 


Quinoa and Kale Pancakes

Makes 12 pancakes, 4 servings.

These pancakes are very nutritious and fun to make. They are also quite tasty at room temperature. I especially like to serve them with a creamy yogurt condiment, which can be prepared at any time. 


  • 1 cup cooked quinoa (recipe follows)
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten with a fork
  • 2 cups ricotta, at room temperature,
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 6 stalks kale, rinsed, dried, stems discarded, finely chopped (See Note)
  • ½ cup loosely packed Italian parsley, finely chopped
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter for sautéing the pancakes


  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 ¼ cups water
  • 1 cup quinoa


  • 1½ cups plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 Persian cucumbers
  • 1 garlic clove
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 10 chives snipped with scissors
  • ¼ cup loosely packed mint leaves, finely chopped


  1. In a small sauce pan bring butter, salt and water to a boil over high heat.
  2. Sprinkle over quinoa, lower the heat, cover and cook for 15 minutes or until all the water is absorbed. If the grains are still not cooked, add 1 tablespoon hot water and continue cooking. Fluff the grains with a fork. Cool.


  1. Place the cooked quinoa, eggs and ricotta in a bowl and mix well.
  2. Add the grated lemon rind, kale and parsley. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon butter in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat.
  4. Shape ¼ cup mixture into patties, patting the mixture down a bit. Sauté in batches, flattening the patties, for 3-4 minutes on each side or until pancakes are golden and crisp.


  1. Place yogurt in a bowl.
  2. Rinse the cucumbers, trim the ends and dice finely.
  3. Place the diced cucumber in a sieve and sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon salt. Let stand for about 20 minutes to drain. Squeeze tightly to get rid of excessive juice (this is important so that the condiment is not watery after a few days.)
  4. Coarsely chop the garlic clove on a cutting board and sprinkle with ½ teaspoon kosher salt. Using a knife blade crush into a paste.
  5. Add to the yogurt along with the other ingredients and season to taste with lemon juice, salt and pepper.
  6. Refrigerate to allow the flavors to blend.


I chop the kale in a food processor in several batches.