Gluten free gruyère and chive popovers are serious business. I've always felt like there was something special about any popover, and knowing how simple they are to make from basic pantry ingredients only makes them more special. I think it has something to do with how light and airy popovers are without any leavening aside from eggs. But gruyère and chive popovers? Well, you can see for yourself that these are just on another level entirely.
I highly recommend a popover pan (here's the simple popover pan I have (aff. link)), as popovers really only “pop” when the hot oven air is able to circulate around all sides of each well. A standard muffin tin simply can't make that happen. But if you don't have one, you can still make these (all the better if you have a muffin tin with relatively deep wells). They just won't rise as high, but will still be delicious. If you're thinking of making these with another cheese than gruyère, make sure you use another hard cheese that has a similar moisture content. I tried making these with yellow cheddar, and the popovers just didn't rise as much as the cheese weighed them down quite a bit. They were still delicious, just not as beautiful, and not as airy. In general, though, baking popovers with grated cheese mixed into the batter means that they won't rise quite as high as straight-up popovers as the cheese does make the batter a bit heavier. The smell in your kitchen while they're baking will quickly convince you that the cheese is worth its weight, though!
If you want to make them without chives, just leave those out. If you're looking to make them without cheese, well then just use the popover recipe from my first book (reprinted here on the blog). But whatever you do, don't open the oven while the popovers are baking or they really won't pop!
Gluten Free Gruyère and Chive Popovers
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it)
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
3 eggs (180 g, weighed out of shell) at room temperature, beaten
1 1/2 cups (12 fluid ounces) milk (not nonfat!)
2 tablespoons (28 g) unsalted butter
1 tablespoon fresh minced chives
6 ounces Gruyère cheese, grated
Preheat your oven to 400°F. Grease well a 6-cup popover pan (or a standard 12-cup muffin tin with very deep wells) with unsalted butter and set it aside.
In a medium-size bowl, place the flour blend, xanthan gum and salt, and whisk to combine well. Set the bowl aside. In a large, heat-safe bowl, place the beaten eggs, and set the bowl near the stovetop. In a small, heavy-bottom saucepan over medium heat, place the milk and butter. Whisk until the milk is just beginning to simmer and the butter has melted. Remove from the heat and drizzle the hot milk mixture into the large bowl of beaten eggs very slowly, whisking the eggs constantly. This will allow you to temper the eggs without scrambling them in the hot milk. Add chopped chives to the flour mixture, and mix to combine. Add all but about 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture to the egg and milk mixture, and whisk until smooth. Place about 3/4 of the grated cheese in the bowl with the reserved 1 tablespoon of dry ingredients and toss to coat the cheese in the flour. Add the cheese and flour mixture to the batter, and whisk again until smooth. The batter should be thickly pourable.
Place the prepared popover pan in the hot oven for 3 minutes. Remove the hot pan from the oven and, working quickly, divide the popover batter evenly among the prepared wells of the popover pan (or muffin tin), and scatter the remaining 1/4 of the grated cheese evenly among the top of the batter in each well. Return the pan to the center of the oven and bake for 20 minutes at 400°F. Reduce the heat in the oven to 300°F and continue to bake for 10 minutes of until the popovers are very puffed and golden. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before removing from the pan and serving warm.
Adapted from the book Gluten-Free on a Shoestring: 125 Easy Recipes for Eating Well on the Cheap and Just A Taste.