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  • Writer's pictureOne World Whisk

FRANCE: Croques Monsieur, Shoe String Fries, and Broccoli Almandine

Updated: Jun 12

Croques Monsieur

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 cups milk

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 1/2 Gruyere or other Swiss, grated

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan

8 slices white sandwich bread, crusts removed

8 oz sliced ham

  1. Melt the butter over low heat in a small saucepan and add the flour all at once, stirring with a wooden spoon for 2 minutes

  2. Pour the milk into the butter–flour mixture in slow stream, whisking

  3. Cook and whisk until the sauce is thickened

  4. Turn off heat and add ½ cup Gruyere and all of the Parmesan and salt

  5. Toast bread in toaster or oven

  6. Assemble sandwiches as follows (bottom up), diving ingredients evenly between 4 sandwiches: Toast, ham, 1 cup Gruyere, toast, cheese sauce, 1 cup Gruyere

  7. Broil 5-7 minutes, or until the topping is bubbly and lightly browned

Shoestring Fries

6 cups vegetable oil for frying

2 baking potatoes (1 1/2 pounds total)

  1. Heat 2 inches oil to 375°F in a wide 5- to 7-quart heavy pot (at least 4 inches deep) over medium heat

  2. Peel potatoes and cut lengthwise with slicer to make 1/8-inch-thick julienne strips

  3. Fry potatoes in small batches – about 5 -- stirring, until golden brown, about 2 minutes per batch (Return oil to 375°F between batches.)

  4. Drain potatoes on paper towels and season with salt

Broccoli Almandine

1 lbs broccoli, cut into 2-inch-wide pieces

1/2 stick butter

1/3 cup sliced or slivered almonds

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

  1. Steam broccoli, 8 to 12 minutes until tender

  2. Meanwhile, melt butter in pot over medium heat

  3. Add almonds, stirring, until butter and nuts are golden and have a nutty aroma, 2 to 3 minutes.

  4. Stir in lemon juice and drained broccoli


  • Nearly 20% of the territory of France lies outside Europe. These regions are known as “DOM-TOM” (overseas departments and territories), where over 2.5 million French citizens live.

  • There are some 40,000 châteaux (castles, manors, palaces…) in France.

  • The Société Bic was the world’s first mass manufacturer of ball-point pens. It sold its 100,000 millionth ball pen in 2005.

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