Prep 30 mins
Cook 25 mins
From a book called Deliciously Different, this would make a lovely side dish, although the description designates it as the main entree, served with new potatoes and a simple side salad. The recipe does not specify how to prepare the chicory, so feel free to leave it whole or perhaps slice in half lengthwise prior to boiling.
- olive oil (for greasing)
- 6 heads chicory lettuce (whole heads)
- 75 g gruyere cheese
- 75 g parma ham
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 150 ml milk
- 150 ml double cream
- salt and pepper
- Grease a baking dish and set aside.
- Boil the chicory in salted water for 5 minutes. Drain, cover with cold water and simmer for a further 12-15 minutes until tender, then drain.
- Preheat the oven to 190C/375°F.
- Grate the cheese and slice the ham thinly.
- Melt the butter over low to medium heat in a heavy pan and gradually stir in the flour to form a roux. Stir for 1-2 minutes to allow flour to cook.
- Add the milk slowly, stirring until the sauce thickens.
- Season to taste and simmer for 5 minutes over low heat.
- Add the cream and simmer for a further 3-4 minutes.
- Add half the cheese to the sauce, stir to incorporate the cheese, then season to taste.
- Drizzle about 3-4 tablespoons of the cheese sauce over the bottom of the baking dish.
- Arrange the chicory in the dish then cover with the slices of ham.
- Spoon over the remaining sauce and sprinkle the cheese over top.
- Bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown and bubbly.