There is this super famous ultra luxe frenchie version of a ham and cheese sam’ich called a croque monsieur, maybe you’ve heard of it? Well I personally prefer the lady version, croquet madame. When I make it I don’t go all ga-ga for béchamel I just use a couple cabinet staples to make my quickie meal. The main reason I prefer the feminine counterpart is due to its versatility. The warm cheesy ham and egg goodness seems perfectly appropriate to eat any time of day.
If you prefer a more traditional recipe try this one, however if you go my way it will be quick and painless and still totally tasty. Biggest tip I can give: make sure the egg is just at over easy/medium. You want as much luscious yolk as possible! Second and third tip are just as simple 2) always serve with a simply dressed salad of spring mixed greens (the acid in the vinaigrette cuts into the richness of the cheese and yolk, you see I always include some of the greens in with a bite of sandwich) and 3) if you can slice your toast right off your favorite loaf of fresh bread. Do these things and I tell you what, you are in for a total treat. Bonus: telling your friends that you had “croque madame” for lunch while you read Italian vogue feels incredibly chic ;)
2 Slices of bread
2 Slices of swiss cheese
2 Thick cut slices of ham
1 T. Butter
– Heat oven to broil.
– Place bread on a sheet pan covered with foil under the broiler for just long enough to give it a light toast on the top.
– Remove pan from broil and flip bread.
– Top bread with ham then swiss cheese (this is where you would spread the Dijon mustard if that’s your thing. I hate mustard so I skip this tradition however I have tried a smear of Allouette which was pretty decent but not essential)
– Put a non-stick pan/skillet on the stove to heat for your eggs, go ahead and add your butter to the pan so that it can melt.
– Place the sandwiches back under the broiler.
– Gently crack two eggs into the warm buttered pan (or do them one at a time if you’re picky about presentation)
– By the time you flip the eggs the cheese should be bubbling golden brown so pull the sandwiches’ from the broiler.
– Assemble on the plate by place one over easy egg on top of each slice of bread.
Easy Frenchie salad of mixed greens with vinaigrette
1-2 C. Spring mixed greens or arugula
1 T. Fresh lemon juice (good vinegar of your choice works too)
2 T. Olive oil (the best you can afford to keep on hand)
1 t. Dijon mustard
½ t. Herbs de Provence
½ t. Kosher Salt
¼ t. Pepper
– In the bottom of a large bowl mix lemon juice and mustard with herbs and seasonings (use a fork or a whisk).
– While whisking stream in olive oil until emulsified.
– Just before plating in the same bowl toss greens in vinaigrette.
* I always make the vinaigrette while the broiler is heating up. Then toss the salad after I flip the eggs.