While in Paris, you can choose from among a plethora of restaurants and bistros for a meal. However, if all you want is a quick bite when you’re out exploring or shopping, you have several options. You can go to a small prêt à emporter or boulangerie where you can grab a Sandwich Jambon et Fromage (a.k.a. ham and cheese on a baguette) and be on your way.
One of our favorite cookware shops in Paris is A.Simon on rue Montmartre in the Les Halles area. On our most recent visit to Paris, I bought what I thought would be the perfect baguette pan from A.Simon to use to make Jambon et Fromage. As it turns out, the pan was absolutely perfect! It is non-stick and produced the perfect sized baguettes for the Jambon et Fromage.
Making the Baguettes for Jambon et Fromage:
Starting with the baguettes, the ingredients included water, sugar, salt, bread flour and instant yeast.
As I typically do, I added the ingredients in the order listed to the pan of my bread machine, and set the bread machine on the dough cycle. After the dough cycle finished, I removed the dough to a floured piece of parchment paper. The dough weighed a little over 24 ounces, so I cut it into four equal sized pieces that were roughly 6 ounces each.
Working with one piece at a time, I patted the dough into a rough rectangle on a well floured piece of parchment paper. Then I folded the long end toward me, and pinched the two sides together. I patted the dough again into a rough rectangle, and repeated the folding and pinching. Next, I then rolled the dough back and forth on the floured surface to ensure that all edges were sealed, that the dough was at a proper length of around 12 or 13 inches, and placed it onto one of the wells of the baguette pan.
I repeated the process with the remaining dough and covered the pan with a clean dish towel to allow the baguettes to double in size. This took about one hour and 30 minutes.
Before baking the baguettes, I misted them with water and slashed each one three times with a sharp knife to allow further rise in the oven.
Into a preheated 400° F oven the baguettes went for 20 minutes until they were golden brown and perfectly cooked. I removed the baguettes to a wire rack to cool completely. I don’t think that there was been a time when I made baguettes that I didn’t marvel at the result. This was no exception! When Susan saw them, she exclaimed “OMG, those are beautiful and the perfect size!”
Making the Sandwich Jambon et Fromage”
Now for the Sandwich Jambon et Fromage. The ingredients included the four freshly made baguettes, French buerre (butter), jambon (ham), and fromage (cheese). In Paris, the cheese tended to be either Emmental or Comté. For our purposes, we used sliced Swiss cheese.
I sliced a baguette length-wise, making sure that I didn’t cut it all the way through, and spread each side with room temperature butter.
Then, I lined one side of the buttered baguette with half slices of Swiss cheese.
I followed this with a layering of ham slices that were folded in half such that they were roughly the same width as half of the cut baguette.
Finally, I lined the other side of the baguette with half slices of Swiss cheese.
I brought both sides of the baguette together and voilà – Sandwich Jambon et Fromage!
I actually made these for Susan. She double wrapped each Jambon et Fromage in plastic wrap, and placed them in a 2 gallon Ziploc bag to store in her refrigerator.
We’re not in Paris anymore, but she has the next best thing. Her conclusion of one that didn’t make it to the refrigerator – “this Jambon et Fromage is WAY better than anything we’ve ever had in Paris”. Yum!
- 1 cup plus 3 Tablespoons (9.5 ounces) filtered water,
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt
- 3 cups (15-ounces) Bread flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons instant or bread machine yeast
- 4 baguettes roughly 6 ounces each
- 8 ounces sliced ham
- 6 ounces sliced Swiss cheese
- 2 ounces (1/2 stick) salted butter, room temperature
Add ingredients to bread machine pan in the order listed. Select Dough cycle, and press start.
- When the Dough cycle has completed, place dough on floured surface. Pat down, and cut dough into 4 pieces, roughly 6 ounces each. With each piece, pat dough onto a rectangle, approximately 6 inches by 4 inches. Roll the long side, forming a cylinder. Press edges together, and continue to shape into loaf with tapered ends. Place on baguette pan. Repeat with remaining pieces of dough. Cover with clean kitchen towel until dough is doubled in size, about 1 hour and 30 minutes. Remove kitchen towel, mist with water and make 2 to 3 make deep diagonal slashes across loaves with a sharp knife of razor blade.
- Preheat oven to 400° F. When oven has reached temperature, place in oven; bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool completely. Yield: 4 individual baguettes.
Slice baguette on long side, ensuring that it is not cut all the way through. Spread each half with softened butter. Line one half with Swiss cheese slices, cut in half. Line with sliced ham, and finish with another lining of Swiss cheese slices cut in half.
If not to be eaten immediately, double wrap each Jambon et Fromage in plastic wrap, place in a 2 gallon Ziploc bag, and store in refrigerator. Best if eaten within one week. After that, the bread tends to dry out and become hard. Yield: 4 Sandwich Jambon et Fromage.
- May use store-bought baguettes in place of home-made baguettes.
- When wrapped in plastic wrap, these will stay fresh for several days in the refrigerator.