Chomp And Cheers: With Croque Madame, Pink Grapefruit And Pomegranate Soda

Chomp With Croque Madame

2 slices of Crusty Bread; 2 slices of Readymade Ham (Pork or Chicken); 2 slices of Cheese, (pref. Gruyère); 1 large Egg for the Bechamel Sauce; 25 g Butter; 1 tbsp. Plain Flour; 125ml Milk; 1 tsp. Dijon Mustard; 1 pinch of Ground Nutmeg.

For the béchamel sauce, melt half the butter in a small pan. Add the flour and stir over medium heat until blended. Gradually add the milk, whisking continuously into a smooth sauce, then simmer gently for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened. Add the mustard, nutmeg, sea salt and black pepper to taste. Set aside. Preheat a grill to high. Lightly toast the bread on both sides under the grill. Arrange slices of ham and cheese on each, then top with béchamel sauce. Place back under the grill to brown the béchamel and melt the cheese. Meanwhile, melt the remaining butter in a frying pan over a low heat. Crack in the egg and fry till the white is cooked but the yolk is still soft, or to your taste. Place the toasts on a plate and top with the egg.


Cheers With Pink Grapefruit And Pomegranate Soda

½ cup Pink or Red Grapefruit Juice (from about 1 small Grapefruit); ½ cup Pomegranate Juice (from about 1 medium Pomegranate); 1 cup Sugar (less if you want); 2 star Anise Pods; Ice; Soda water; Pomegranate Arils for garnish (optional).

Combine grapefruit juice, Pomegranate juice, sugar, and star anise in a small saucepan over medium heat. Boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly to dissolve the sugars. Remove from heat and let sit 30 minutes. Strain and discard solids. Let syrup cool completely. To serve, fill an 8-ounce glass halfway with ice cubes, add 3 tablespoons of syrup, fill with soda water, and stir. Add more syrup for a sweeter or stronger flavor. Garnish with pomegranate seeds.

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