Croque Monsieur- Chefs de France

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2 tablespoons minced shallots
2 to 3 tablespoons butter or margarine, at room temperature
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/4 cup fat-skimmed chicken broth
1/4 cup milk or whipping cream
6 ounces gruyère cheese, shredded (1 1/2 cups)
4 slices of Gruyère cheese, thickly sliced
1/16 teaspoon fresh-grated or ground nutmeg
8 slices firm white bread (thickly sliced)
1/4 pound sliced cooked ham (they use an un-named imported french ham)
Shredded provolone, parmesan and Swiss mixed together

1. In a 10- to 12-inch nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat, stir shallots in 1-tablespoon butter. Stir often until golden, about 3 minutes. Add flour; stir until blended. Remove from heat and add broth and milk; whisk to blend well. Return to heat and whisk until mixture is boiling vigorously. Remove from heat and add cheese and nutmeg; stir until cheese is melted. Pour sauce into a bowl.

2. Lightly butter one side of each bread slice and lay buttered sides down on a sheet pan. Divide half the cheese sauce equally among 4 slices; spread sauce to edges. Lay ham, cheese equally over sauce, top with the remaining bread slices.

3. Place the provolone, parmesan and Swiss cheese on top of the bread and bake in the oven until cheese is melted.



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