June 3, 2012

Witloof in de oven

After a brief hiatus from Fridgespiration to enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime vacation in Europe, I'm back in action, and happy to be back in my own kitchen!  Now inspired more than ever by all the wonderful meals like fondue in Gruyere, spatzle in Zermatt, crawfish & safron in Nyon, escarcot in Paris and of course all kinds of cheese at every meal in between!

While I didn't get to Belgium on this trip, witloof in de oven, is a favorite dish of mine (belgian endives with ham au gratin in english), and one I made frequently while living there in 2006.  I picked up some bechamel sauce mix at a grocery store in France for this dish, but you can make it from scratch like this.

What's in the fridge:
- 2 belgian endives
- 4 slices of ham
- 1 cup b√©chamel sauce
- 3/4 cup shredded monterey jack (or swiss)
- 1 slice loraine swiss

- Soak endives in boiling water for 5 minutes to soften, then pat dry.
- Cut endives in half length wise (outer layers may come off)
- Saute in skillet with olive oil.  First, heart side down for 5-7 minutes, then flip for 2-3 minutes

Endives after flipped in the skillet
- Remove from skillet and cut off 1cm of the heart end of each endive
- Wrap each endive in one slice of ham

Endive wrapped in ham
- Place endives wrapped in ham in greased baking dish side-by-side
- Pour bechamel sauce on top, then top with shredded cheese

Endive topped with bechamel and cheese
- Add slice of lorraine swiss across endives
- Place dish under the broiler until browned (about 10 minutes)
- The dish is traditionally served over mashed potatoes, but here I served it with pasta with extra bechamel sauce on top and some dried parsley.  Smaklijk!!!

Witloof in de oven!

Bon Appetit!

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