A croque-monsieur is a hot ham and cheese (typically emmental or gruyère) grilled sandwich. It originated in France as a fast-food snack served in cafés and bars. More elaborate versions come coated in a Mornay or Béchamel sauce. The emergence of the croque-monsieur (and variations) is mirrored by growth in popular fast-foods in other countries.
2 thick slices cooked ham
4 thick slices white bread, with crusts cut off
4 oz. Swiss or Gruyère cheese, grated (1 c. when grated)
3 tbsp. butter*
2 tsp. all-purpose flour
1 c. milk, heated
1. Put ham slice on each of 2 bread slices. Then press all but 2 tbsp. grated cheese on top of ham.
2. Make sandwiches by firmly pressing another bread slice on top of each.
3. In a saucepan, heat 1 tbsp. butter, stir in flour, and let cook 1 minute.
4. Add warm milk and stir until thick and creamy.
5. Add 2 remaining tbsp. grated cheese. Add pepper to taste. Keep this sauce warm, but do not boil.
6. Beat egg and dip 2 sandwiches in it, making sure both sides of each sandwich are soaked.
7. Melt 2 remaining tbsp. butter in a frying pan. Fry sandwiches until golden and crisp on both sides.
8. Pour cheese sauce over each sandwich and serve.
Preparation time: 30 minutes
*To cut the saturated fat content, fry the sandwiches in 1 tbsp. of margarine or olive oil instead of butter. Spraying a nonstick pan with cooking spray is also an option. The sauce can be omitted, too