The ingredients: for 4 persons
- 8 stumps of witloof
- 8 slices of cooked ham
- 1 L milk
- 50 g flower
- 50 g butter
- 300 g grated cheese
- salt & pepper
Clean the witloof by removing the outside leafs and take out the heart at the bottom of the stumb. The heart of the witloof is what leaves a bitter taste. Steam the witloof until the stumbs are tender and let them leak out.
Melt the butter (don’t let it become brown) and add the flower while stirring with a whisk. Continue stirring until the flower is cooked a bit. Add 0.5 l milk and keep on stirring slowly until the sauce starts to boil. Flower and milk combinations have the tendency to burn on the bottom of the cooking pot, so don’t put the heat too high. When the sauce starts boiling, it thickens, now add more milk while stirring until you reach the preferred consistency. Add pepper, salt and lots of grated nutmeg. This sauce is also called a béchamel.
Remove the pot from the fire and melt the cheese into the sauce while stirring. Leave some cheese to cover the platter later.
Roll up each stump of witloof in a slice of cooked ham and arrange them nicely side by side in a baking dish. Poor the cheese sauce over the witloof and sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top.
Put the dish in a preheated oven of 180°C. Cook it about half an hour until you start to see cooking bubbles rising from the bottom of the dish, and then grill it for about 10-15 minutes to crisp the top.
Serve with mashed potatoes.
This is one of our best kept secrets. We eat this with a drop of ketchup. Yes, ketchup! You’ll be surprised how the tastes of the mashed potatoes, the witlof, the ham and the cheese blends with the tomato taste.