Friday, May 10, 2013

Croque Monsieur and Pommes Frites Seasoned with Rosemary





Have you ever tasted the quintessential French
sandwich, the Croque Monsieur?

My first time was at the Mon Ami Gabi in
Las Vegas and I was in love.

This rich ham and cheese sandwich covered in
a Mornay sauce is out of this world.

I was going to serve crepes for our
French inspired Bride's Maids' dinner
but remembered this sandwich and got
online to find a recipe.  I had no idea I 
could be lectured so much about a simple
sandwich- what cheese to use, what bread
to use, how to prepare it, etc.  


I ended up choosing Ina Garten's recipe and 
tweaked it a little as a crispy sandwich is desired
that can stand up to being smothered with
the Mornay sauce and then more cheese and broiled
so I decided to go the modern way and crisp 
my sandwich up in a panini maker instead of
baking the bread and then the sandwich in 
the oven.  The results were great.

Croque Monsieur Recipe
(Adaptation of Ina Garten's recipe)

Makes 8 large sandwiches

Mornay Sauce 
2 T. butter
3 T. flour
2 C. hot milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
dash nutmeg
1/2 C. grated gruyere cheese
1/2 C. fresh grated parmesan cheese

Sandwich Ingredients

1/2 lb. sliced Black Forest Ham
4 C. grated gruyere cheese
16 slices of thick sliced crusty bread
(I used sourdough loaves and cut them on
an angle to get larger sandwich slices.)
Dijon mustard
soft butter

Heat oven to Broil.

In a small saucepan place the 2 C. milk and heat
it until it is just bubbling around the edges.  Meanwhile
melt the butter in another small sauce pan.  Add the
flour and stir and heat for about 1 minute.  Gradually
pour in the hot milk.  If you make your sauce with
hot milk, it will thicken almost immediately.

Stir in the seasonings and the cheese and heat 
gently until the cheese is melted.  Set aside and
let cool until thickened.

Butter the outsides of your bread.  Spread Dijon
mustard on one half of the sandwich.  Top with a 
generous amount of sliced ham and and a generous
amount of shredded cheese.

Put the two halves together and place in a panini
maker or use a griddle or frying pan and brown
until cheese is melted.  I used a panini maker and
just set the cover down gently and it worked perfectly.

When the bread is well toasted and the cheese 
is melted, remove and place on a baking pan that
has been sprayed with Pam.  Spoon a generous
spoonful of the thickened Mornay sauce on top
of each sandwich and then top with additional
Gruyere and Parmesan.

Place the pan of sandwiches under the broiler
until the cheese bubbles and browns a bit.


Some of the recipes said to remove the crusts
from the bread.  I loved the crusty bread and
wouldn't dream of losing those wonderful
crusts.


The aroma of the sandwich broiling is just
amazing.  


This is such an incredible flavor combination
and textural combination.  We had leftovers
again tonight!



Pommes Frites 
Seasoned with Rosemary 

frozen shoestring potatoes
Season All salt
crushed dried rosemary
vegetable oil

Heat the vegetable oil to 375 degrees.  I like to
use a deep fat fryer or an electric fondue pot.  Place
one frozen potato in to make sure that
it is ready - it should bubble rapidly.

Carefully place two handfuls of frozen potatoes
in the oil.  Stand back as the oil may spit from
any ice crystals on the potatoes.  Cool until golden - a few
minutes.  Don't overload the fryer as they will take
too long to cook and be soggy.  We like to use the 
shoestring as they crisp up better than thicker
fries.

When crispy and golden, remove from the oil 
with a slotted spoon and immediately season
with the Season All and rosemary.  

Serve creatively in a parchment paper cone in
a metal cone holder.  You can buy these at many
stores now.  I purchased these at Sur la Table
but I have also purchased some at Home Goods.
I will be posting with
Foodie Friday



Jacqueline
Jacqueline

Chocolat - French for Chocolate. I adored chocolate from a young age when I had to sneak in the cupboard to find where my mother had hidden the Nestle's Chocolate Chips. Having read about the famous chocolat shoppes in Paris, when I finally got there I was determined to try a chocolate from every Paris shoppe. I invite you to share my adventures in creating, in travel, and in life.

14 comments:

  1. Jacqueline, I'm a fan of Croque Monsieur and Pommes Frites. I'll try the recipe. I've never made one for myself.
    Wishing you the sweetest of Mother's Days ~ Sarah

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  2. Oh my goodness - I might as well just apply this directly to my hips - but oh so good!

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  3. As I sit here this morning I'm thinking that wouldn't be a bad sandwich for breakfast either! Happy Mother's Day Weekend Jacqueline-enjoy:@)

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  4. This is certainly a meal that would be loved by the folks in this household. Looks so ooooey, gooooey, yummy...

    Happy Mother's Day
    Shug

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  5. A real treat indeed..and so many variations!

    THose fry stands are so cute.

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  6. Good Afternoon Jacqueline, Croque Monsieur is the king of sandwiches. It looks fabulous. I have read a lot about it but have never eaten one,but now I have the recipe my husband is going to be in heaven.
    Pommes Frites I first had in Germany and I thought them a little strange to look at, as in England we have a much thicker cut chip, but once tasted, never forgotten, they are lovely. I love how you have arranged the Pommes Frites, I have never seen little containers like yours in England.
    Thank you for another wonderful recipe.
    Enjoy Mother's Day tomorrow.
    Best Wishes
    Daphne

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  7. Oh how yummy are these sandwiches! Ina's recipes are always outstanding. Happy Mother's Day!! xo

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  8. Delicious looking...I haven't had a croque monsieur in years...but I am sure it would make a nice summer supper.

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  9. Ooohh weee!!!! Talk about decadent!!! That Gruyere cheese costs about an arm and a leg, but it is SO worth it! This looks beautiful!!!

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  10. Oh yummy, you cook them, I'll bring the wine.
    Judith

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  11. Yum, just look at these sandwiches! I must start serving fries that cute way ;o)Happy Mother's Day!! xo

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  12. What a treat! This is such a glamorous grilled cheese - leave it to the French :). We have a French bistro in town that makes these and they are delicious. Love the rosemary frites too!

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  13. My favorite sandwich EVER, and yours looks AMAZING! I must admit I was excited to see you used frozen fries for the pomme frites, I have done that and they are sooooo good and easy. The rosemary sounds like the perfect dress up!Yum!
    Thanks, Jenna

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  14. Hi Jacqueline, my first time at your blog. This looks so delish! I have to confess I have never had one before. I will be trying this soon. I am going to follow you and look over your lovely blog and recipes. So glad I stopped by and I look forward to reading more. Blessings! Wanda

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