Salmon and Caviar Croque Monsieur with Watercress Salad

2013-06-20
Three Meals a Day Recipe Collection
  • Servings : 12

A wonderful starter. Although it is expensive it is worth it!

Ingredients

  • CROQUE MONSIEUR
  • 12 oz Gruyere cheese
  • 18 ½" thick slices pullman bread or good quality white bread
  • 18 oz thinly slices smoked salmon
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped chives
  • 18 oz American caviar
  • 16 tbsp (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature ( soft enough for brushing)
  • DRESSING
  • 1/2 cup creme fraiche
  • 2 tsp prepared horseradish
  • 1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice plus enough to dip apple later
  • 2 small shallots finely minced( 1 ½ tsp)
  • water as needed
  • fine sea salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • FOR THE SALAD
  • 3 cups baby watercress, washed
  • ¼ medium Granny Smith apple, peeled and cut into 2" matchsticks, then sprinkled with lemon juice
  • ¼ English(seedless) cucumber, peeled and cut into 2" matchsticks

Method

Step 1

CROQUE MONSIEUR: Line a mandoline or wide vegetable peeler to cut the cheese into very thin, almost translucent slices. Line up the 18 bread slices close together in 2 even rows. Evenly distribute the thin slices of the the cheese on 9 of the bread slices, covering all. Lay thinly sliced smoked salmon over 9 of the bread slices, covering all of the bread. Sprinkle the salmon with the finely chopped chives. Join the halves to form 9 sandwiches and pat down slightly. Use a serrated knife to cut off crusts, (You may make the recipe up to this point. 2 hours in advance. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.) To Assemble: Open each sandwich and gently spoon ½ to 1 Tbsp. caviar onto the Centre ( on top of the smoked salmon), Spreading it in circle about 2 inches across. Gently close with the cheese side facing up, use half of the softened butter to brush the top of the sandwiches Heat a large non stick pan over medium- high heat. Working with 2 or 3 sandwiches at a time, place them in the skillet buttered side down, brush the tops with softened butter. Use spatula to carefully turn the sandwiches over and cook for 1 minute on the salmon side. Transfer the sandwiches to a clean cutting board. For Dressing: Combine the Creme Fraiche, horseradish, lemon juice and shallots in a small deep bowl and whisk in about 1 tbsp. of water to loosen. Season with salt and pepper to taste. For the salad: Place the watercress, green apple and cucumber in a stainless steel bowl. Season with fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper and drizzle with Creme fraiche dressing. Divide the salad evenly placing a small amount at the side of each plate and that the apple and cucumber sticks are evenly distributed. To Assemble Carefully cut the Croque Monsieurs into quarters. Place three on each plate.

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