Sometimes it’s the super simple, everyday recipes that deliver the most joy. For Iain and his dad, it’s croque monsieur. They first had it on a joint trip to France and, since then, it’s become their favourite weekend lunch. Iain’s made a few changes to it along the way (bonjour, wafer-thin roast turkey) – but for him and his dad, it’s most definitely ‘proper’.
- Brush one side of each slice of bread with the melted butter using a pastry brush. Set a frying pan over a medium heat and toast the bread on the buttered side golden.
- For the sauce, whisk a little of the milk with the cornflour and mustard. Once the mixture is smooth, put it in a saucepan over a medium heat with the remaining milk.
- Stirring continuously, bring the sauce to a simmer until thickened. Allow to bubble for 1 min before lowering the temperature and adding the cheese. Stir until you have a smooth sauce. Remove from the heat and stir occasionally to prevent a skin from forming while you're making the sandwiches.
- Build the sandwiches by layering the turkey, followed by the ham, on the untoasted sides of the bread. Spoon on the cheese sauce and top with the remaining slices of bread, untoasted side down. Slice in half and serve with a rocket and tomato salad.
For an even more substantial croque, top with a fried egg.
Leftover Gruyère is great stuffed into meatballs, grated over veg soups or halved baked potatoes, or used for macaroni cheese.