(with Gruyère and wheat bread)
108 degrees! Ugh! I dunno about you all but I was sweating like a pig all weekend. We had a Catholic school graduation to attend Friday night and it was balls hot in the church. They said the AC was on, but I have my doubts. On the bright side, maybe I sweated off a pound or two. Saturday night, I ended up at the Endurocross racing at The Sleeptrain Arena (is that what the name is this week?) with Mr.S. and the kidlets. I know, I know...you all can't picture me at an event like this but I ended up having a good time. Endurocross is a super fast, intense, high endurance sport. It's similar to motocross racing but instead of just speeding around, they race over large rocks, logs, tires and even through a water pit. I especially liked watching Wally Palmer race (unfortunately, he didn't win).
Sunday cooled down considerably, thank god! Mr. S. took me to Green Acres Nursery to buy some veggie plants for the raised garden bed he made for me. How awesome is he? What was really impressive was that he made the whole thing from scratch. I absolutely love it. We planted peppers, cherry tomatoes, Japanese eggplant, cucumbers, basil and squash. Kidlet #1 wanted a watermelon plant so we planted that too. Now if they'd just grow overnight, I'd be a happy camper. (I'm soooo impatient!) Grow! Grow! Grow!
Lately I've been watching Rachel Khoo's show, "Little Paris Kitchen" online. I had checked out her new cookbook from the library recently and found that I liked the simplicity of her French recipes and how she gives each one a neat twist. (Plus she's a hapa like me and cooks in a teeny-tiny kitchen, gotta love that!) This morning I made one of her recipes for breakfast for Mr.S. and the kidlets, the Muffin Tin Croque Madame. The snack-sized savory treat got an enthusiastic thumbs up all around from my favorite little taste testers. I made some small modifications to the recipe to suit my taste but followed the recipe as is for the most part. You can see the original recipe here: Croque Madame Muffins. By the way, the leftover Mornay sauce is absolutely delicious on a side of grits or as a dipping sauce for biscuits.
(with Cheddar and white bread)
"Muffin Tin" Croque Madame
For the Mornay (cheese) sauce:
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup plus 1 tbsp milk, lukewarm (whole or 2%. Skip using nonfat, soy, almond, etc. for this recipe)
- 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 cup grated Gruyère cheese (or cheddar)
- 3 tbps grated Parmesan cheese
- salt and pepper
- 6 large slices of bread, no crusts
- 3 tbsp butter, melted
- 2 1/2 oz ham, cut into cubes or thin strips or 3-4 strips of bacon chopped into small pieces
- 6 small eggs
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. In a small saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of butter over medium heat. Add your flour, and beat together until smooth.
3. Gradually add your milk, whisking the entire time. Add your Dijon mustard and nutmeg. Let it all simmer together for about 10 minutes. Give it a whisk every few minutes so it doesn't burn.
4. Add about 90% of your Gruyere and all of your Parmesan. Continue whisking the ingredients. Add salt and pepper to taste.
5. Remove the crust from the bread slices and flatten each slice. You can brush both sides of the bread with melted butter, but I found just doing one side was fine.
6. Spray your 6-cup muffin tin with cooking spray. Press each slice of bread in the muffin hole. You can used the bottom of a drinking glass but I found it just as easy to smoosh it down with my fingers.
9. Place a few pieces of ham or bacon in the bread "cup". Followed by one egg on top (you may have to pour out a little of the egg white before adding the egg, so that it fits). Top with 2 tablespoons of the Mornay sauce. Sprinkle with your leftover Gruyère. Season with some black pepper, if you wish.
10. Place the muffin tin in the oven. And cook for 20 minutes (a few minutes less, if you like your eggs on the runnier side).
11. Remove tin from oven. Use a fork or knife to pop the croque madame out. Serve while hot.