Croque Madame Is The Best French Gift Since The Statue Of Liberty
Vive la flippin' France! 🇫🇷
Oui oui, s'il vous plaît!
Oooh la la! What could possibly be better than a melty cheesy baked ham sammie topped with a crispy fried egg? Croque madame, derived from the French verb "croquer," meaning to bite or crunch, quite literally translates as "Mrs. Crunch." As in, "I'll have a small coffee and a Mrs. Crunch, if you please."
The Chosen One of breakfast (and lunch, and dinner) sandwiches, the croque madame is without a doubt the best French gift since the Statue of Liberty. Here's how to make one, dear Francophile friends.
What you'll need:
(Makes 4 sandwiches)
-5 tablespoons butter
-3 tablespoons flour
-2 cups whole milk
-1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
-3 1/2 ounces grated Gruyere cheese (1 1/3 cups)
-8 slices firm white sandwich bread
-4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
-1/2 pound thinly sliced high-quality ham (preferably Black Forest)
-4 large eggs
-salt and pepper (to taste)
Make the sauce:
Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a saucepan over medium low heat. Whisk in flour and cook while whisking for 3 minutes. Next, whisk in milk and bring to a boil. Whisk constantly. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes, whisking occasionally. Whisk in salt, pepper, nutmeg, and 1/3 cup grated cheese until melted. Remove from heat.
Prep the sandwiches:
Over each of 4 slices of bread, spread 1 1/2 tablespoon sauce evenly, then sprinkle with remaining cheese (1/4 cup per slice). Spread Dijon mustard on remaining 4 slices of bread and top with ham. Match up the cheese-topped bread with the mustard-topped bread to form sandwiches.
Lightly oil a shallow baking pan. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium low heat, then cook sandwiches for 3 to 4 minutes total, turning over once until each side is golden.
Remove from heat and transfer sandwiches to baking pan. Wipe out skillet. Preheat broiler. Top each sandwich evenly with 1/3 cup sauce. Broil sandwiches until sauce is bubbling and golden in spots, 2 to 3 minutes. Turn off broiler and transfer pan to lower third of oven to keep sandwiches warm. Heat remaining butter, 1 tablespoon, in nonstick skillet over medium heat, then crack eggs into skillet and season with salt and pepper. Fry eggs, covered, for about 3 minutes, until whites are set and yolks are still runny. Top each sandwich with a fried egg and serve!