You start by quartering pitted Kalamatas and combining them with a minced garlic clove, some chopped, fresh rosemary, olive oil, and salt and pepper in a saucepan. Yes, these gourgeres are made with olive oil rather than butter. When the olive mixture comes to a boil, flour is added and stirred until it forms a ball. It’s at this point in the process of making choux paste that I usually take a tip from Ina Garten and transfer the dough to a food processor for mixing in the eggs. It’s much easier than beating them in by hand. However, with the nice chunks of black olives in this dough, I didn’t want the blade of the food processor to reduce them to tiny bits. I still took a lazy approach by mixing in the eggs one at a time with a hand mixer. Grated parmesan was mixed in as well. The size of the gourgeres is up to you, and the recipe includes baking times for smaller, olive-size ones and for larger tablespoon-size ones. I went with the larger size. I brushed the gourgeres with egg wash and sprinkled the tops with more grated parmesan before they went into the oven for about 25 minutes.
They were puffy and light just as gourgeres should be, and the black olives and parmesan made them delightfully savory. These were perfect little treats to accompany a cocktail. In the section of the book on choux paste, there’s also an interesting suggestion for making the dough into tiny pea-size pieces for sprinkling over soup or salad like croutons. I wasn’t kidding about all the smart tips in this book.
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