What to do left over ham - Truffled Croque Monsieur
'Croque Monsieur' the French words for 'Toasties of Champions' (or thereabouts). We cannot get enough of this toasted sandwich after Christmas. It's the perfect thing to make if you're not sure what to do with left-over Christmas ham. Grab yourself some bread, gruyere cheese and whip up some bechamel sauce for the ultimate toastie this Christmas.
12 slices sourdough bread
300gm sliced Christmas ham
200 gm grated Gruyère
1 medium fresh white truffle
Freshly picked flat leaf parsley, dill, tarragon and chopped chives EVOO
90 gm butter, coarsely chopped
90 gm plain flour
1 litre milk (4 cups)
Pinch of nutmeg
1 egg yolk
Pickled Spanish onion
1 Spanish onion, thinly sliced
1 tbsp caster sugar
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- Preheat oven to 180C.
- For béchamel, melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat, add flour and whisk continuously until sand-coloured, then gradually add milk, whisking continuously. Season to taste, add nutmeg and whisk occasionally until thick and smooth (12-15 minutes).
- Set aside to cool slightly (5 minutes), then gently whisk in yolk and fine Microplane fresh white truffle to taste.
- Cover directly with plastic wrap, set aside to cool, then refrigerate until set (20-30 minutes).
- Meanwhile, for pickled Spanish onion, combine onion, sugar and 1 tsp salt in a bowl, stand until onion is soft, add vinegar and set aside to pickle (20 minutes, or until required).
- Spread 2 tbsp béchamel onto each slice of bread. Divide ham, pickled Spanish onion, half the Gruyère and thinly shaved white truffles among half the bread slices, then sandwich with remaining bread slices with the béchamel side up.
- Scatter with remaining cheese and refrigerate to set (30 minutes).
- Place sandwiches on a large oven tray lined with baking paper and bake until cheese is melted and bubbling (15-20 minutes).
- Cut in half and serve warm with herb salad and cornichons.