Crispy ham rolls with sunset sauce
A recipe that brings back memories, this Crispy cheesy Ham Rolls with Sunset Sauce was one of my childhood favourites made with simple ham rolls covered with a tomato based béchamel sauce, covered with cheese and broiled in the oven. You can serve it with pasta – great for kids.
INGREDIENTS (serves 4)
⦁ 500 ml / 2 cups whole milk
⦁ 30 grams / 1 oz flour
⦁ 30 grams /1 oz unsalted butter
⦁ 1 small onion
⦁ 2 cloves
⦁ 1 chicken stock cube
⦁ 1 small bay leaf
⦁ a pinch of nutmeg (optional)
⦁ sprig of thyme
For the rest
⦁ 6 slices of good quality ham
⦁ 100 ml 0.4 cups of heavy whipping cream
⦁ Up to 5 Tablespoons of good quality tomato sauce (like a passata)
⦁ 100 grams / 3.5 oz grated cheese (or less if you want a bit of cheese crust)
⦁ 1 teaspoon of butter to coat the gratin dish
TO MAKE BÉCHAMEL SAUCE:
- Melt the butter in a pan on a low heat, and once it is melted add the flour and mix it in well with a wooden spoon, still on a low heat. Once mixed, leave it to cook on low for up to 3 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave it to cool totally.
- Pour milk in another pan and add a sprig of thyme, a small bay leaf, an onion cut in half with a clove in each half, nutmeg to taste and a pinch of salt. Cook on low till it reaches boiling point and then add up to one crumbled stock cube and stir in. Cook on low for a minute or two. Turn off the heat.
- Passing it through a sieve, add some of the hot milk to the cold roux and whisk it together. When all is well integrated, add the rest of the milk and continue whisking. Return to the pan on a low heat and bring to the boil while whisking.
- Add 50 ml – 100 ml of cream and bring back to the boil.
Add enough tomato sauce to create a sunset colour (but not enough to impart a tomato flavour). Turn off the heat.
FINISHING THE GRATIN:
- Pre-heat the oven (fan forced) to 200 C (392 F). Ensure that the top element is on.Grease a large baking dish with butter.
- Pour some sauce on the base and place the rolled ham pieces on top, leaving a little space between each.
- Lay more warm sauce over each piece and spread grated cheese over the top.Place the dish in the oven for 15 – 20 minutes, being sufficient to crisp the cheese.
- If extra crispness is desired, the temperature of the oven can be increased to 220 C.
Serve on a bed of pasta.