Now before you get confused and think i’ve started focussing on French Cuisine, I’d like to introduce my lovely friend Hélène who writes over at the very lovely blog Croque-Maman. I met Hélène on the food photography course at Leiths before Christmas, and we instantly bonded fiddling with camera settings and composition. Turns out the French mum of toddler twin boys has just moved one street away from where I live so I’ve gained a new neighbour too!
Hélène has some delicious recipes up her chic French sleeve, so I asked her if she’d like to share one with you guys. Lucky for us she agreed….
When Katie invited me to guest post on her website I felt a bit overwhelmed… such an amazing established blog… my head was spinning… and then… (!!!light-bulb moment!!!)… I thought of this great quick-and-easy all-in-one French classic: les endives au jambon, I could not go wrong with this, so here we are!
The endives au jambon (ham wrapped endives gratin) is a very classic French family dish. We used to have this maybe twice a month in winter when I was a child. Now that I am a mum myself I understand why, it is really easy to make and it is an all-in-one meal that the family loves. The traditional version includes a béchamel but, these days, with my twin toddler boys, I am mostly going for the quick and easy midweek dinner version, which is the one I have chosen to share with you today.
What is great is that having eaten/made this dish over and over, I got to know the pitfalls of it. I boil my endives the day before so as they are completely drained when I cook the complete dish (and don’t make the sauce watery) and I remove part of the endives core so as the dish does not turn out bitter.
Hélène alias Croque-Maman
Endives au jambon (Ham wrapped endives gratin)
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 30 mins (the day before) + 40 mins
4 slices of ham (medium thickness)
a knob of butter
1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
200ml thick crème fraiche, half-fat
160g Emmental cheese, grated
salt and pepper to taste
1. (The day before if you can) Remove part of the endives cores – to avoid bitterness and boil the endives for 30 minutes until tender. Drain them.
2. Preheat your oven to 200ºC.
3. Roll each endive in a slice of ham and place them your baking dish.
4. Warm the butter in a saucepan; add the garlic, crème fraiche and ¾ of the cheese. Mix over the heat until the cheese is all melted and everything is well combined.
5. Poor the cheesy sauce in your baking dish over the ham wrapped endives. Cover the all dish with the rest of the cheese.
6. Cook in the oven for 30 minutes, until the top is golden.
My most popular mid-week dinner recipes so far are the ones of the tarte au thon and the saumon en papillote. Give them a try and don’t miss out on all my upcoming French top tricks, tips and recipes by registering to my free newsletter on Croque-Maman’s homepage or by following me through Croque-Maman’s Facebook page.