Prep 10 mins
Cook 20 mins
A French Grilled Cheese sandwich. From Martha Stewart.
- 1⁄3 cup unsalted butter, plus
- 1 teaspoon unsalted butter
- 1⁄2 cup pastry flour, plus
- 1 tablespoon pastry flour
- 4 cups milk
- 1 cup gruyere or 1 cup swiss cheese, grated, plus
- 8 ounces gruyere or 8 ounces swiss cheese, thinly sliced
- coarse salt, to taste
- fresh ground white pepper, to taste
- freshly ground nutmeg, to taste
- cayenne pepper, to taste
- 8 slices white bread, cut 1/2 inch thick
- 6 ounces french ham, thinly sliced
- butter, for pan
- In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add the flour, and cook until foaming, stirring constantly, about 1 minute. Continue to cook, stirring, until the cooking diminishes the flour taste, about 3 minutes.
- In a medium saucepan, warm milk. Slowly add warm milk to butter-flour mixture, stirring so that no lumps form. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and cook 2 minutes more. Stir in half of grated cheese, and season to taste with salt, white pepper, nutmeg, and cayenne. Cook until thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat, transfer to a bowl, and set aside to cool.
- Toast the bread on both sides in a hot oven until golden brown. Arrange 4 pieces of toast on work surface, and spread with a small amount of sauce. Cover with a slice of cheese, slice of ham, and another slice of cheese. Top each sandwich with another piece of toast. Spread with additional béchamel sauce, and sprinkle each sandwich with remaining 1/2 cup grated cheese.
- Place sandwiches in an ovenproof pan brushed with butter, and bake in 450°F oven until heated through, about 4 minutes. Transfer to broiler, and broil until golden brown and bubbly.
It tastes like I remember from Paris. It does take a while to prepare, and pastry flour can be hard to find. I cut down a bit on the prep time by using the pre-shredded gruyere and emmentaler mix. I've also gotten into the habit of making several extra and freezing them for later consumption.