This recipe was originally featured in The 30 Second Wine Advisor's FoodLetter on Thursday, Dec. 2, 2004.

Turkey-prosciutto stacks with cheese

INGREDIENTS: (Serves two)

For the "stacks"
Four slices cooked turkey breast
Four pieces of thin-sliced prosciutto
2 ounces (60g) Swiss Gruyere or similar cheese
For the sauce
1 tablespoon (15g) butter
1 tablespoon white flour
2/3 cup milk
1 ounce Parmigiano Reggiano or similar cheese
1 teaspoon (5g) Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard powder
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
Black pepper


1. Preheat oven to 325F (160C). Layer two slices of turkey breast and two slices of prosciutto alternately into two short stacks, and place both stacks in a lightly greased baking pan or oven-proof dish. Cut the Gruyere into thick slices and place an equal amount on top of each stack. Place them in the preheated oven to warm through for 10 or 15 minutes, until they're hot and the cheese is melted.

2. Meanwhile, make a quick Mornay sauce. Warm the milk (1 minute in the microwave in a Pyrex measuring cup should be just right). Grate the Parmigiano and measure out the other ingredients. You'll want to have everything at hand and ready to go as you make the sauce.

3. Put the butter into a saucepan over medium heat. (If you have one, a saucier - a heavy saucepan with a curved bottom to accommodate a whisk - is a great tool for sauce-making.) When the butter has melted and most of the bubbles have died down, put in the flour all at once, and whisk until it is smoothly incorporated into the butter and has cooked slightly but not yet started to brown. Pour in the milk, a little at a time, whisking as you do so. When all the milk has been added, let the mixture come back to a gentle boil. When it thickens a bit, reduce heat to very low. Add the grated cheese, the Dijon and dry mustard and the cayenne, and stir until the ingredients are incorporated into a smooth sauce. Season with salt and pepper to your taste.

4. Leave the sauce over very low heat, stirring occasionally, while you finish the stacks by turning on the broiler just long enough to brown the top of the cheese. Serve on hot plates, surrounded by the sauce.

MATCHING WINE: Pinot Noir seemed perfect, and this dish went very nicely with a good one from Sonoma's Russian River Valley, "J" 2002 Pinot Noir, featured in this week's Wine Advisor Premium Edition. It would go well, too, with a fruity, low-tannin Italian red - a Chianti or other Sangiovese-based red - or with a relatively rich and full white, from Chardonnay to Chenin Blanc to a Southern Italian variety.

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