Fancier Noodle Kugel
My mother always made this noodle souffle on Christmas, as a brunch to keep us going until Christmas dinner, and get us away from the chocolate. It’s essentially a noodle kugel with beaten egg whites to make it a souffle, and a bunch of dairy added,s but it’s more exciting to eat than a plain kugel, and was always a big favorite. Nowadays I usually make it for dinner, rather than brunch, but it makes a good brunch for company. It bakes a long time, so you can make it ahead and pay attention to your company, and then just take it out of the oven all ready to go.
How to make noodle souffle:
Preheat the oven to 375 F. Put a large saucepan full of water on to boil. When it boils, add a pound of flat egg noodles as for kugel and cook them al dente, so they’re still a little bit chewy.
Meanwhile, grease an oven-proof casserole and put a stick of butter in it. Melt the butter in the microwave (or in a saucepan if your casserole can’t go in the microwave). Add a whole container of cottage cheese (one pound) and a cup of whole-fat Greek yogurt. Or, use a pound of ricotta you make yourself: heat a half-gallon of milk to warm, add 1/4 cup of white vinegar, stir until it curdles, and strain.
Separate 3 eggs and add the yolks to the cheese. Add two tablespoons of sugar and a large pinch of kosher salt, and mix. If you want to, add a cup of raisins and/or a chopped apple.
When the noodles are done, drain the hot water and rinse off the noodles with cold water in the colander so the starch on the noodles won’t make them stick to each other. Add the noodles to the cheese mixture and mix.
Use an electric mixer (or a whisk, if you’re feeling energetic) to beat the egg whites into stiff peaks and fold them into the cheese mixture. Sprinkle breadcrumbs on top of the souffle and bake for about 40 minutes, or until set in the center.
Vegetarian or vegan?
Noodle souffle is vegetarian, but butter, eggs and cheese keep it from being vegan. It’s not too hard to make a vegan noodle kugel. In the early fall we usually eat noodle souffle with sliced cantaloupe. Once the melons are gone by, noodle souffle is also good with a pile of candied carrots or applesauce.
Can I keep noodle souffle for later?
Yes, this souffle will be good reheated for a week if you keep it in a sealed tupperware, but it won’t freeze well.