Ham-And-Cheese Toasts With Jalapeno Cream By Chef Mitchell Rosenthal

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Recipe adapted from "Cooking My Way Back Home: Recipes From San Francisco's Town Hall, Anchor & Hope, and Salt House" by Mitchell Rosenthal (Ten Speed Press)

Faith's Warm Ham-And-Cheese Toasts With Jalapeño Cream
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Faith's Warm Ham-and-Cheese Toasts With Jalapeño Cream
Prep Time
Cook Time
Total time: 45 minutes
  • Jalapeño cream
  • 4 cups heavy cream
  • 4 jalapeño chiles, split lengthwise
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup grated St. George or medium-aged white cheddar cheese
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Toasts
  • 12 slices sourdough bread, each ½ inch thick
  • 6 thin slices Smithfield ham or prosciutto
  • ½ cup grated St. George or medium-aged white cheddar cheese
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 6 poached eggs, warm
  1. Make the jalapeño cream: In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the cream and chiles. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cream coats the back of a wooden spoon and takes on the flavor of the chiles, 10 to 15 minutes. Discard the chiles.
  2. Add the Parmesan and St. George. Continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, until the cheeses are completely melted. Add the salt and a few grinds of pepper. Set aside and keep warm.
  3. Make the toasts: Preheat the broiler. Place 6 bread slices on a work surface and top each slice with 1 ham slice. In a small bowl, combine the cheddar and Parmesan. Top the remaining 6 bread slices evenly with half of the cheese mixture. Place the ham-topped bread slices, ham side down, on the cheese-topped slices, creating 6 sandwiches. Using 1 tablespoon butter for each sandwich, brush both sides of each sandwich. Place the sandwiches in a panini press and grill until golden-brown. [If you do not have a panini press, place the sandwiches, 1 or 2 at a time, in a hot, lightly oiled sauté pan set over medium heat. Place a smaller second sauté pan on the sandwich(es) and place a heavy object, such as a brick or a filled kettle, on the upper skillet. After a few minutes, flip the sandwich(es) over and heat for a few minutes until golden-brown on the second side, or until both sides are golden-brown and the cheese is melted.] 4. Place each sandwich on a heatproof plate or sheet pan and top with a poached egg. Ladle the jalapeño cream evenly over each egg-topped sandwich. Sprinkle the remaining cheese evenly over the sandwiches. Place under the broiler and broil until the cheese is lightly browned. Serve immediately.
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