Posts Tagged 'dijon mustard'

Croque Monsieur

Croque mr

Croque Monsieur

I had my first Croque Monsieur when I lived in France during culinary school. To this day it has remained my favorite sandwich.

Basically, a Croque Monsieur is a grilled ham and cheese sandwich. But the French have elevated what would be a simple sandwich into a work of art! A classic ham and cheese is slathered with a béchamel sauce to make it even more indulgent.

The key to a good Croque Monsieur is the ingredients. Since the ingredients are few, you need to use good ones. Traditionally, a nutty Gruyère or Swiss Emmental cheese is used. Most markets carry these cheeses, but in a pinch, a good Swiss cheese could be substituted. As for the ham, this sandwich is a wonderful way to use up the leftovers from your Christmas baked ham.

The béchamel sauce is what makes this sandwich. Considered a “mother” sauce in French cuisine, a béchamel is very simple to prepare. Butter and flour are cooked together over low heat before milk and cheese are added to make this traditional cheese sauce. Thanks to the cheesy goodness that the sauce adds, it really is a knife-and-fork kind of sandwich.

This classic French treat is perfect for supper, lunch or a weekend brunch. They are so rich, serve them simply with a salad or soup. However you choose to serve them, I bet they will become your family’s favorite ham-and-cheese sandwich too.

Croque Monsieur

Serves 4

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 1/2 cups grated Gruyere cheese, divided
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
8 slices white sandwich bread, lightly toasted
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 pound baked ham, thinly sliced

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. When the butter starts to foam, add the flour. Cook, whisking until thickened, about 1 minute. While continuing to whisk, gradually add the milk. Cook, whisking constantly, until the sauce is thickened, about 2 to 4 minutes. Remove the mixture from the heat and add the nutmeg, Parmesan, and 1/4 cup of the Gruyere. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

To assemble the sandwiches, place 4 slices of the toasted bread on a baking sheet. Lightly brush each of the slices with 1 tablespoon of mustard. Top each with 1/4 of the ham and 1/8 of the remaining Gruyere (about 1/4 cup). Top each with one of the remaining toasted bread slices. Pour the cheese sauce evenly over the tops of the sandwiches and sprinkle each with 1/4 of the remaining Gruyere. Transfer to the oven and bake until warmed through, about 5 minutes. Turn on the broiler and broil until the topping is bubbly and lightly browned about 3 to 5 minutes. Serve hot.

Variation: Feeling indulgent? Top your Croque Monsieur with a fried egg and you will be enjoying a treat the French call a Croque Madame.

From Simply Suppers by Jennifer Chandler.

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Grilled Corn and Green Bean Salad

Grilled Corn and Green Bean Salad_0921

 

Grilled Corn and Green Bean Salad 

This easy summer side dish is a great addition to any backyard barbecue. I like to make this colorful and chilled side dish ahead of time so I am free to enjoy time with my guests.

Enjoy!

Grilled Corn and Green Bean Salad

Vegetable oil, for the grates
4 large ears corn, shucked
2 tablespoons butter, softened
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pound green beans, trimmed, boiled until crisp-tender, and cooled
1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion (1/2 small onion)
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese

Preheat a clean grill to medium-high with the lid closed for 8 to 10 minutes. Lightly brush the grates with oil.

Brush the corn with the butter. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Place the corn on the grill. Close the lid and cook the corn, turning occasionally, until just tender and slightly charred on all sides, 8 to 10 minutes total. Transfer the corn to a cutting board to cool.

When the corn is cool enough to handle, use a sharp knife to carefully slice the kernels off the cob; discard the cob. Place the kernels in a large bowl. Add the beans, tomatoes, and onion.

In a small bowl whisk together the mustard, vinegar, and oil until well combined. Add the dressing to the vegetables and toss to coat. Add the goat cheese and toss. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 4 to 6.

Cooking Tip: Blanching is a culinary term for cooking a vegetable until it is just crisp-tender. Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add the vegetable and cook until vibrant green and crisp-tender, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process.

Do-Ahead: The vegetables and dressing can be prepped the night before. Toss all the ingredients together before serving.

Variation: Feta cheese would be a delicious substitute for the goat cheese in this salad.

From Simply Grilling by Jennifer Chandler

Food Styling by Jennifer Chandler

Photo by Justin Fox Burks

 

Dijon Red-Skinned Potato Salad

Dijon Red-Skinned Potato Salad

Dijon Mustard transforms classic potato salad into an out-of-the-ordinary side dish.

3 pounds small red potatoes, cubed
Kosher salt
1 cup mayonnaise
¼ cup sour cream
3 tablespoons French’s Dijon mustard
½ cup thinly sliced celery
½ cup finely diced red onion
¼ cup chopped fresh dill
Freshly ground black pepper

In a large stockpot place the potatoes, 1 teaspoon of the salt, and enough cold water to cover the potatoes by 1 inch. Over high heat, bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the potatoes are fork tender, about 20 to 25 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking.

Place the potatoes in a large mixing bowl. Add the mayonnaise, sour cream, French’s Dijon mustard, celery, red onion, and dill. Toss until well combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve chilled.

Serves 6.

Variation: If you prefer, feel free to peel the potatoes before cooking.

Photo by Justin Fox Burks

Chicken with Creamy Dijon Herb Sauce

I am always looking for recipes that are easy to prepare and are dishes that my whole family will love.  This recipe that I found at www.Frenchs.com fits that bill.  And as an added bonus, all the ingredients are ones that I always have in my pantry!

Enjoy!

Chicken with Creamy Dijon Herb Sauce

1/2 cup chicken broth
6 tablespoons French’s® Dijon Mustard
1/3 cup cream cheese spread, softened
1 tablespoon minced herbs (parsley, basil, or chives)
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 (6 oz.) boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 teaspoon minced garlic

In a small bowl mix the broth, mustard, cream cheese, and herbs until well blended; set aside.

Cook the chicken in hot oil in nonstick skillet until browned on both sides, about 15 minutes.

Stir in the mustard sauce and garlic. Simmer over medium heat until the sauce thickens slightly and flavors are blended, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Serves 4.

Cooking Tip: Substitute 2 tablespoons prepared pesto sauce for the herbs.

Oven Bake: Mix the sauce ingredients. Pour over chicken in greased baking dish. Bake at 375 °F for 30 min. until cooked through.

Egg Salad

Egg salad sandwiches are some of the easiest sandwiches in the world to make, especially if you have some hard boiled eggs sitting around in the fridge. Dijon mustard is my secret ingredient. I like to use French’s because it has Chardonnay wine in it.

Enjoy!

Egg Salad 

6 hard boiled eggs, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon French’s Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons minced yellow onion
¼ teaspoon Frank’s RedHot
Kosher Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Place the chopped eggs in a medium mixing bowl. Using a fork, mash up the eggs a little. Add the French’s Dijon mustard, mayonnaise, onion, and Frank’s RedHot.  Stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 4.

Cooking Tip: When mashing the eggs, don’t overdo it. You want the egg mixture to have some texture.

Variation: Add fresh dill or chives for an Herbed Egg Salad or chopped olives for a classic Egg & Olive rendition.

Asparagus, Roasted Red Pepper, and Arugula Salad

Asparagus, Roasted Red Pepper, and Arugula Salad
From Simply Salads by Jennifer Chandler

This tasty salad makes an elegant presentation for a dinner party first course.  Arrange on a platter for a wonderful buffet offering.

For the White Balsamic Vinaigrette:

2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

For salad:

1 bunch (about 1 pound) asparagus, tough woody ends snapped off and discarded
1 package (5 ounces) Baby Arugula salad blend
1 roasted red bell pepper, thinly sliced (about 1/2 cup)
1/3 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and finely chopped
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped

For the White Balsamic and Dijon Mustard Vinaigrette:

In a small bowl whisk together the vinegar and mustard.  Slowly add the oil in a steady stream, whisking to emulsify.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

For the salad:

Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add asparagus and cook until vibrant green and crisp tender, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Drain the asparagus and immerse in an ice water bath to stop the cooking process. Drain again and set aside

On each plate, place a bed of arugula. Layer the asparagus on top.  Arrange the peppers on top of the asparagus. Generously drizzle with the vinaigrette to taste.  Garnish with the olives and red onion.

Makes 4 appetizer salads

 

 

 

Potatoes Au Gratin

This dish looks so elegant on the table that no one will believe how easy it was to make. I often serve it at dinner parties with steaks or roasts.

Potatoes Au Gratin
Adapted from Simply Suppers by Jennifer Chandler

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus extra to grease the baking dish and the foil
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup heavy cream
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
5 medium baking potatoes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon French’s Dijon or Spicy Brown Mustard
1/4 cup grated Gruyere cheese

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease a 9- x 13-inch baking dish with butter and set aside.

In a large saucepot combine the milk, cream, butter, garlic, and nutmeg. Peel the potatoes and cut into slices about 1/8-inch thick. Add the potato slices to the milk mixture to prevent discoloration.

Over medium-high heat, bring the milk mixture to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are slightly tender but still firm, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the potatoes to the prepared baking dish, arranging the top layer of the potatoes in an overlapping pattern, if desired. Add the Dijon and mustard and stir to combine. Pour the milk mixture over the potatoes. Sprinkle the Gruyere cheese evenly over the top. Cover the dish with a buttered piece of aluminum foil, buttered side down.

Bake until the potatoes are fork tender, about 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake until the potatoes are golden brown, about 20 minutes.

Serves 6 to 8.

Cooking Tip: The difference between freshly grated nutmeg and commercially ground is night and day. To grate whole nutmeg, use a special nutmeg grater or scrape the seed over the finest rasps of your box grater. I buy my whole nutmeg at the grocery in a specially designed jar with a grinder built into the lid.


Jennifer Chandler

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