Croque Madame

A simple name for a serious sandwich. No really, it’s kind of difficult because there are too many balls in the air at once. But doesn’t it look so pretty and so French?

Since every Friday is steak night around here, this is a wonderful way to have a quick Monday dinner with leftover Bechamel. The other ingredients are key and if you miss one, then it becomes just an egg sandwich. If you’re going to have a side (broiled asparagus above), make it a quick salad or something you can do ahead because this is very hands-on prep.
Bechamel (see below)
Deli Ham (De Becca Black Forest)
French bread
Gruyere or Emmenthaler
Batali’s Bechamel
5 tbsp butter
4 tbsp flour
4 C milk (whole is great, but I usually use a combo of half and half with 2 % since that’s usually on hand)
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
Melt butter, wisk in flour. Cook until flour no longer smells raw. Meanwhile, heat milk in microwave. Turn heat off on roux when adding milk. Temper with a little at first and then add the rest. Add seasonings and cook 10 min until thickened.
Croque Madame
Heat broiler. Slice bread. Melt butter in large pan. Coat bread in melted butter and toast, adding more butter before you flip it. Remove toast to rimmed baking sheet and top with bechamel, 2 slices of ham and gruyere.
Heat nonstick skillet for eggs. Melt 1-2 tbsp butter and fry eggs over easy.
Put sandwiches under broiler to melt cheese. Remove and top with sunny eggs. Serve immediately.
Phew. It goes really fast so you have to think one step ahead. Also, there’s no short cutting. Tried to do a simpler version for breakfast and it was no where near as good.


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