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Recipes & Entertaining Ideas

Filtering by Tag: Gruyere

Gruyère Fondue

Marc J. Sievers

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Back in the 1970’s fondue was all the rage, with bubbling fondue pots being the star at many a chic get-together around the country. While no longer the fad du jour it used to be, I happen to think that an old-fashioned, cozy fondue party is a fabulous way to gather with friends in the middle of a long, cold winter!

My fondue is simple to make; you don’t need any special equipment- just a heavy-bottomed, heat-proof pan that you can set over a small candle or a sterno can. Fondue is traditionally served with a crusty bread, but I also love to pair it with a medley of perfectly roasted potatoes. Did you also know that you can prepare fondue in advance? You can store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to three days and reheat in a pan with a few splashes of white wine or heavy cream just before serving. This dish is comfort food and a soirée starter all in one. Add a bottle (or two) of a bold red wine, a big green salad with my French Bistro Vinaigrette, really fun friends and you’re all set!

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Gruyère Fondue

Ingredients (serves 6)

  • Gruyere – 14 ounces, freshly grated

  • Fontina – 3 ounces – freshly grated

  • Flour – 2 tablespoons, all-purpose

  • Butter – 2 tablespoons, unsalted

  • Shallots – ¾ cup, ¼” diced

  • Thyme – 1 teaspoon, finely minced, fresh

  • Garlic – 4 cloves, thinly sliced

  • Nutmeg – ⅛ teaspoon, freshly grated

  • Sea Salt – ¾ teaspoon

  • Black Pepper – 1 teaspoon, freshly cracked

  • White Wine – 1 ½ cups, Chardonnay recommended

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, combine both cheeses and the flour and toss to coat.  Set aside. 

  2. Next, in a medium heavy-bottomed pot set over medium heat, add the butter.  Once hot add the shallots and thyme and cook for 3-5 minutes stirring occasionally until the shallots are translucent.  Add the garlic, nutmeg, salt, and pepper, and cook for 60 seconds, being careful not to burn the garlic. 

  3. Pour in the wine and allow it to come to a boil. 

  4. Finally, add the cheese mixture in small handfuls and whisk briskly until smooth before adding in more cheese.  Repeat this step until all of the cheese has been added.  

  5. Transfer the fondue to a heat-proof pan set over a candle or sterno can to keep warm and serve immediately.  If the fondue gets a little thick as it sits, add a splash of wine.


    A Few Tips to Keep in Mind

  • Make sure to measure the cheese after cutting away the rind for the most accurate measurement.

  • I like to garnish the fondue with a sprig of fresh thyme and a few of the leaves for a simple, but beautiful presentation.

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Watch: Stuffed Croissants with Spinach

Marc J. Sievers

I am just so excited to share with you the first webisdoe of my newest series on YouTube of From My Kitchen To Yours: Table for Two edition!  When I started planning out recipes I wanted to film from my new cookbook, I really wanted to show you how truly easy and elegant my idea of cooking and entertaining for you and your +1 can be.  To launch the new series, I knew my Stuffed Croissants with Spinach would be the perfect recipe!  Not only can you serve these as part of a breakfast or brunch, they are also fabulous with a salad for lunch, or even as a first course for dinner.  Not to mention, the "filling" doubles as a creamy and luxurious spinach dip!

Series 5, Episode 1: Stuffed Croissants with Spinach


Stuffed Croissants with Spinach

Ingredients (serves 2)

  • Plain Croissants – 2, store-bought

  • Olive Oil – 1 tablespoon

  • Butter – 1 tablespoon, unsalted

  • Shallot – 1 small, finely minced

  • Garlic – 1 clove, finely minced

  • Spinach – 1 bag (5 ounces), rough-chopped, reserve 2 whole leaves for garnish

  • Sea Salt – ¼ teaspoon

  • Black Pepper – ¼ teaspoon, freshly grated

  • Gruyère Cheese – 4 tablespoons, freshly grated, divided

  • Mascarpone – 2 tablespoons

  • Parmesan Cheese – 2 tablespoons, freshly grated (Parmigiano-Reggiano recommended)

  • Egg Wash – 1 extra-large egg lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon of water

Directions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F.

  2. Line a half sheet pan with parchment paper. Slice each croissant horizontally along the outside curve, but not cutting all the way through—you want to make a “pocket” for the filling to nestle into. Set aside.

  3. In a 10-inch sauté pan set over medium-low heat, add the olive oil and butter. Once hot, add the shallots. Cook for 2 minutes just until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to cook for another 30 seconds, being careful not to burn the garlic.

  4. Next, add the chopped spinach, salt, and pepper. Cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally until the spinach is wilted and tender.

  5. With a spatula, transfer the hot spinach to a small bowl and add the parmesan, mascarpone, and 2 tablespoons of Gruyère. Stir until the mascarpone is melted.

  6. Next, spoon the mixture evenly into the “pocket” created in each croissant.

  7. Brush the outside of each croissant with egg wash, place a spinach leaf on top of each croissant and brush again with the egg wash. Then, evenly sprinkle each croissant with the remaining 2 tablespoons of Gruyère.

  8. Place onto the prepared sheet pan and bake for 7-9 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the spinach leaf is crisp. Remove from the oven and serve immediately.

Idea:  This recipe can also be served as a hot spinach dip!  Instead of stuffing the spinach mixture into a croissant, put it in a heat-proof serving bowl alongside a selection of pita chips, tortilla chips, black pepper crackers, or even crisp carrot sticks.

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Roasted Mashed Potatoes

Marc J. Sievers

During the holidays (and all year long), one of my favorite things to indulge in are mashed potatoes.  Growing up my Nan would serve huge bowls of them coated in melted butter and lightly seasoned with black pepper.  Just the anticipation from the smell of the boiling potatoes and the starchy air coming from the kitchen would make my mouth water!  Fast forward a “few” years, and it’s now my turn to host holidays and get-togethers while still maintaining the traditions of years past.

This year I really wanted to make a version of mashed potatoes that showcased the earthy taste of roasted potatoes and the freshness of basil.  Roasting the potatoes really deepens their flavor and the little browned bits that collect on the bottom of the pan add a slight crunch.  Since most holiday dishes use fresh herbs like rosemary, thyme, and sage I thought introducing basil would be a welcomed flavor to awaken the taste buds!  Take a glance at my Savory French Tart that features a seasoned rosemary crust and is perfect for serving as an hors d’oeuvre with champagne or a glass of wine before the feast.

Follow my recipe below and surprise your family and friends with a simple yet unique take on a classic dish!


Roasted Mashed Potatoes

Ingredients (serves 4 - 5)

  • Yukon Gold Potatoes – 3 pounds, peeled and cut into 2-inch cubes

  • Olive Oil – 4 tablespoons

  • Garlic – 5 cloves, peeled and lightly smashed

  • Butter – 6 tablespoon, unsalted

  • Whole Milk – 1 ⅓ cups

  • Sea Salt – 1 teaspoon

  • Black Pepper – ¾ teaspoon, freshly cracked

  • Gruyere – 1 cup, finely grated, plus more for garnish

  • Basil – ¼ cup, finely minced, plus more for garnish

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

  2. Place the potatoes onto a sheet pan and toss with oil olive. Roast for 40 minutes, tossing once half way through the cooking time.

  3. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan set over low heat add the butter and lightly smashed garlic cloves. Allow the butter to melt completely and simmer for 10 minutes.

  4. Then add the milk and return to a simmer. Remove from the heat, cover, and allow to steep for 20 minutes. Use a slotted spoon and remove the whole garlic pieces and discard them.

  5. Place a food mill fitted with a small disc-blade over a large heat-proof bowl. Process the potatoes and all the browned bits from the bottom of the sheet pan through the food mill, turning the handle back and forth.

  6. As soon as the potatoes are milled, whisk in the warm butter-and-milk mixture, salt, pepper, Gruyere, and basil.

  7. Garnish with a light sprinkling of freshly cracked pepper, grated Gruyere, and fresh basil. Serve hot

Tip: Use a rasp to grate the Gruyere in order to get very fine shreds.  These fine shreds will be completely absorbed into the potatoes allowing them to be very creamy and have a slight nutty texture.

Idea: Mashed potatoes may be kept warm in a heat-proof bowl set over simmering water.  Just cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap first, making sure to keep it away from the flame.

Order a signed copy of my cookbook Entertaining with Love!

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Roasted Butternut Squash Lasagna

Marc J. Sievers

I am always looking for new ways to cook with and prepare one of my all-time favorite vegetables, butternut squash.  One of the best cooking methods (and easiest!) to prepare it is roasting.  The roasting process really brings out the sweet flavor and it also caramelizes it slightly while making the edges a bit crisp!  Because roasting happens at such a high temperature, roughly 425-450 degrees, it allows the cubes of squash to cook on the outside and still retain an “al dente” like texture inside, almost the consistency of a cubed potato you would find in soup.

While roasted butternut squash is fabulous by itself (right out of the oven), on salads, sandwiches, and in my Autumnal Risotto, I really wanted to showcase the delicious flavor in an all-time classic like lasagna!  My Roasted Butternut Squash Lasagna is filled with other favorites like red peppers, fresh thyme, and the nutty flavor of Gruyere.  Don’t let the size of the pan fool you either!  This lasagna is as hearty as they come, layer after layer, bite by bite, it’s going to be a fabulous roller coater of flavor.  Tie up those apron strings, pour a glass of wine, and get cookin!  Happy yummy-ness!


Roasted Butternut Squash Lasagna

Ingredients (serves 4 generously, or 6 accompanied with a salad)

  • Roasted Butternut Squash – 3 cups, recipe below

  • Red Pepper – 2 large, ½-inch diced

  • Yellow Onion – 1 large, ½-inch diced

  • Garlic – 5 cloves, finely minced

  • Thyme – 3 tablespoons, freshly minced

  • Nutmeg – ¾ teaspoon

  • Black pepper – 1 teaspoon, freshly cracked

  • Sea Salt – ¾ teaspoon

  • Flour – ½ cup, all-purpose

  • Butter – 12 tablespoons, unsalted, divided

  • Milk – 4 cups, whole

  • Olive Oil – 1 tablespoon

  • Gruyere – 1 cup, freshly grated

  • Parmesan – 1/2 cup, freshly grated

  • Mozzarella – ½ cup, shredded

  • Lasagna Noodles – ½ pound, no-cook variety

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Butter a 8 x 8 x 2-inch baking dish.

  2. In a large sauté pan heat 4 tablespoons of butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium-low heat. Cook the onions and red peppers for 15 to 17 minutes or until tender and the edges are slightly golden brown. Add the garlic, thyme, and roasted butternut squash. Continue to cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.

  3. Combine all three cheeses into a small bowl and set aside.

  4. In a small sauce pan bring the milk to a simmer and then set aside.

  5. In a large sauce pan melt 8 tablespoons (1 stick) of butter over low heat. Add the flour and continue to cook for another 1 to 2 minutes, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon.

  6. Pour the hot milk over the butter mixture. Add the salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Continue to cook for another 5 to 6 minutes until it becomes thick, stirring constantly with a whisk.

  7. To assemble the lasagna, coat the bottom of the baking dish moderately with white sauce. Arrange a layer of noodles to cover the bottom of the dish. Add 1/₃ of the sauce, 1/₃ of the butternut squash mixture, and 1/₃ of the cheeses. Repeat the process twice more. You will have a total of three layers of noodles with three layers butternut squash and cheese in-between.

  8. Place the baking dish onto a sheet pan and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the top is browned and the sauce is bubbly and hot.

  9. Allow to cool for 10 minutes and serve hot.

Tip: The lasagna may be assembled 1 day in advance and kept in the refrigerator.  Allow the lasagna to sit out at room temperature for 1 hour before following baking instruction.


Roasted Butternut Squash

Ingredients (makes 3 - 4 cups)

  • Butternut Squash – 1 large, peeled, seeded, and cut into ½-inch cubes

  • Olive Oil – 3 tablespoons

  • Sea Salt - 2 teaspoon2

  • Black Pepper - 2 teaspoon, freshly cracked

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

  2. In a large bowl toss the cubed squash with the olive oil, salt, and pepper.

  3. Place squash on a baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees F for 40 to 45 minutes. Halfway through the baking time, toss the squash pieces with a spatula to ensure even roasting and browning. Remove from oven and let cool. The squash should be aromatic and lightly caramelized.

Tip: The roasted butternut squash can then be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Order a signed copy of my cookbook Entertaining with Love!

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Oven Mac 'n Cheese

Marc J. Sievers

I have yet to come across someone who doesn’t love mac ‘n cheese!  It’s one of those universal comfort foods that can be made in hundreds of ways, with or without toppings, baked, and even fried!  It can cheer you up on a rainy day, enjoyed by the bowl fill while watching a movie, or served during game night with friends (I’m a champ at monopoly!).  My Oven Mac n’ Cheese uses 4 distinctive cheeses and is topped with fresh garlic bread crumbs made from a toasted baguette.  All in all, this dish is sure to bring smiles and accolades from those who indulge!


Oven Mac 'n Cheese

Ingredients (serves 8)

  • Demi Baguette – cut lengthwise

  • Butter – 2 tablespoons, unsalted, at room temperature

  • Garlic – 2 cloves, finely minced

  • Sea Salt – 1½ teaspoons, divided

  • Black Pepper – 1½ teaspoons, divided

  • Heavy Cream – 1½ cup

  • Whole Milk – 1½ cups

  • Semi-Soft Fontina – ½ pound, grated

  • Red Leicester – ½ pound, grated, available at Trader Joe's

  • Gruyere – ½ pound, grated

  • Parmesan – ½ pound, grated

  • Elbow Macaroni – 2 pounds, dry

Directions

  1. Preheat broiler to highest setting.

  2. Place the garlic, butter, and ½ teaspoon each of sea salt and black pepper into a small bowl. Mix until well combined.

  3. Spread each cut side of the baguette evenly with the butter mixture.

  4. Place the baguette halves cut side up onto a sheet pan. Place under the broiler for 3 - 5 minutes, or until golden brown.

  5. Remove from the broiler and place the toasted baguette into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Pulse until the texture resembles course breadcrumbs. Set aside.

  6. In a medium sauce pan set over low heat add the milk, heavy cream, and 1 teaspoon each of sea salt and black pepper.

  7. Bring to a simmer then turn off the heat and cover the pan with a lid. Set aside.

  8. Next, bring a large pot of well-salted water to a rapid boil. Add dry pasta and cook for half of the suggested cooking time.

  9. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

  10. Drain the pasta and return it back into the pot. Add the grated cheeses, warm milk, and cream. Mix until well combined.

  11. Transfer the cheesy pasta into a 5 quart baking dish. Sprinkle evenly with garlic bread crumbs and place into the oven uncovered. Cook for 15 - 20 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the sides are bubbly. Serve hot.

Order a signed copy of my cookbook Entertaining with Love!

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Craquelins Savoureux (Savory Crackers)

Marc J. Sievers

Craquelins Savoreux

Like many of you, food is constantly on my mind.  To be more specific cheese and chocolate!  I am always trying to invent dishes that can be made in just a few minutes, all the ingredients can be found at your local grocery store, and will impress guests.  My Craquelins Savoureux is a delicious combination of Gruyere, dark chocolate, basil, honey, and a crisp cracker.  It fulfills both the sweet and savory side of cravings and also makes for an elevated presentation.  Best of all, this recipe involves zero cooking, so it's great for weeknight entertaining!  You can even individually wrap the components and bring them to a pot-lock (with a bottle of wine), just don't forget a serving tray.  Happy indulging!


Watch my very first webisode of From My Kitchen to Yours on YouTube in which I feature the Craquelins Savoureux:


Craquelins Savoureux

Ingredients (serves 10, expand recipe as needed)

  • Gruyere Cheese – 6 ounces, cut into 30 thin slices

  • Dark Chocolate – 3 ounces, rough chopped

  • Basil – 30 small fresh leaves

  • Water Crackers – 30, plain

  • Honey – In a squeezable container

Directions

  1. Simply layer each cracker with a slice of Gruyere, a basil leaf, a dollop of honey (about the size of a nickel), and topped with a piece of dark chocolate.

  2. Arrange on a serving platter or flat board.

Tip: You can substitute the plain honey for fresh honey comb for added elegance!

Order a signed copy of my cookbook Entertaining with Love!

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