I can remember the first time I had a Croque Monsieur vividly. I was 8 years old, had just moved to Tokyo with my family, and come back from school orientation and while waiting for my mother in lobby seating area my father ordered one for us. He was so excited to see it on the menu. I think to this day it is still the best croque monsieur; I have ever had. Recently, in the past year I have been on the quest to find one that compares. I have found one that competes but thought I would indulge and try it on my own. I have seen them cut up small and served as hors d’Â oeuvres. Which I think is an awesome idea.
What makes this different from just a ham and cheese sandwich? The Bechamel Sauce. I never would have thought to put a sauce in a sandwich, but oh how it makes it delicious!
Pre Heat 350 degrees
4 slices of Sandwich Bread
4 ounces of Slice Ham
1 1/4 Cup of Grated Gruyere Cheese
1/4 Cup of Grated Parmesan Cheese
2 Tablespoons of Butter
1 Tablespoon of Dijon Mustard (optional)
5 to 6 Tablespoons of Bechamel Sauce (See Below)
Lightly and evenly butter on both sides of bread and toast both sides in saute pan over low heat until just golden brown. If you decide to use Dijon Mustard spread one side of each toasted slice with mustard. Evenly place the ham slices and about ½ cup Gruyere cheese on two of the bread slices. Top each with one of remaining bread slices, mustard-side down. Spread bechamel sauce to cover the top of each sandwich including the crust. Sprinkle evenly with the remaining Gruyere cheese and Parmesan Cheese. Place on a pan and bake for 5 minutes, then place under broiler until cheese is bubbling and lightly browned, about 3 minutes.
1 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoons flour
½ cups warmed milk a plus 1 Tablespoon
Salt and ground pepper to taste
1/4 Cup of Grated Gruyere Cheese
Melt the butter in a saucepan. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, until the paste cooks and bubbles a bit, about 2 minutes, do not let it turn brown. Add the hot milk, continue to stir, the sauce will thicken and bring to a boil. Add salt and pepper, lower the heat, and cook, stirring for 2 to 3 minutes more. Remove from the heat and stir in the Gruyere Cheese.