Thursday, May 26, 2011

Duke's Souffle

     John Wayne is my all time favorite actor.  In honor of his birthday I thought it was fitting to make his favorite casserole.  His wife Pilar wrote that he was first served this cheesy, chili souffle at a brunch in honor of President Miguel Aleman of Mexico.  She would often make this for him when he went on location.  He would carry a copy of the recipe wherever he went, sometimes making it for his cast and crew.  I have made it twice, once in my 12 inch dutch oven and again in my 10 inch oven with the addition of evaporated milk and flour.  I am posting the recipe with the milk as it was a bit more stable and rose higher.  For a 12 inch oven place 10 coals in a ring around the bottom and 16-18 on top.  Check it halfway through to make sure it isn't browning too quickly.  Throw a wire whisk in your chuck box to beat the egg whites at your campsite.  It may seem like a lot of cheese but it melts down with the chilies making a rich base for the light and puffy egg souffle.  Put a John Wayne film in your DVD player and treat yourself to a plateful of this unbelievably delicious dish.  Perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  This is taken from The Great Entertainer Cookbook from the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, Wyoming.  Supposedly John Wayne gave this recipe to one of the women who worked there in 1976.

Duke's Souffle
1 lb. Monterey Jack cheese, grated
1 lb. Cheddar cheese, grated
2 4 oz. cans green chilies, drained, seeded, and diced
4 eggs, separated
1 Tblsp. flour
2/3 cup evaporated milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
2 medium tomatoes, sliced and halved

     Lightly oil or spray a 10 or 12 inch dutch oven.
     Layer cheeses and chilies in bottom of oven. 
     Beat egg yolks slightly, then mix with flour, milk and seasonings.  Beat whites until soft peaks form, then fold into yolk mixture.
     Spread evenly over cheese layer in dutch oven.  Form an overlapping border around the edge of the dish with tomatoes, pushing slices halfway into mixture.
     Bake at 325 degrees for 30-40 minutes.

Layer chilies and cheese in bottom of oven

Whip egg whites until soft peaks form

Fold in egg yolk mixture

Place sliced tomatoes around edge of casserole

Eggs puffed and golden

Eggs rose higher with the addition of milk in a 10 inch oven

Rich and definitely delicious


  1. Had a hankering for an egg dish for breakfast, and this caught my eye, and being a fan of John Wayne as well only added color to the recipe. I reduced by one egg to cook in an 8" Dutch oven, and it turned out delightfully.
    As John Wayne might have put it, "Yer a special breed, little Liddy!"

    1. Thanks so much Frenchy! Glad the recipe turned out well, will have to try it in my 8 inch oven, it's one of my favorites. Happy cooking! Liddy

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