Looks Too Good Not to Share

September 11th, 2009

I came across the following recipe when I opened an email from one of my favorite stores, Williams Sonoma. Even though I don’t have a panini maker, I figured it could be made by using a skillet or something to press down the sandiwch. I thought this sandwich (while not diet conscious), looked so delicious that I had to share. I’m actually feeling a little tempted to make it, but will probably resist temptation right now, but when I do make it will only eat half a sandwich, since I think I gained a pound just looking at the picture and reading the recipe.

If you make it, let me know how it is, although I can’t imagine anyone not liking this sandwich.

Croque Madame
The grilled ham-and-cheese sandwich with béchamel sauce, known as a croque monsieur, is a perennial favorite at French brasseries and bistros. When crowned with a fried egg, as in this recipe, the sandwich is called a croque madame. The dish takes its name from the French word croquer, which can mean either “to crackle and crunch” or “to munch.”

2 Tbs. unsalted butter

1 Tbs. all-purpose flour

3/4 cup milk

1/2 tsp. kosher salt, plus more, to taste

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Pinch of cayenne pepper

8 slices sweet batard, each 1/2 inch thick

1/4 cup canola oil

3 tsp. Dijon mustard

8 slices Black Forest ham

4 oz. Gruyère cheese, grated

4 eggs

Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley for garnish

In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 1 Tbs. of the butter. Whisk in the flour and cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture is pale golden, about 3 minutes. Slowly add the milk, whisking constantly. Simmer, continuing to whisk, until the sauce is smooth and thickened, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the 1/2 tsp. salt plus black pepper and cayenne, to taste. Set the béchamel sauce aside.

Preheat a panini press to 375ºF or medium according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Brush one side of each bread slice with oil. Place the slices, oiled side down, on a clean work surface. Spread the mustard on 4 of the slices and top each with 2 slices of ham, folding the ham if necessary to keep it even with the edges of the bread. Spread the béchamel sauce evenly over the ham and sprinkle the cheese on top, dividing evenly. Top each with one of the remaining bread slices, oiled side up.

Place the sandwiches on the preheated panini press and cook according to the manufacturer’s instructions until golden and crispy, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large fry pan over medium-high heat, melt the remaining 1 Tbs. butter. When the butter foams, break the eggs into the pan, spacing them about 1 inch apart. If using egg rings, spray the inside of 4 rings with nonstick cooking spray, place in the pan and break an egg into each ring. Season the eggs with salt and black pepper. Cook until the whites are firm, about 3 minutes. Remove the egg rings, if using. Flip the eggs over and continue cooking until the whites are cooked through but the yolks are still runny, about 1 minute more.

Slide an egg onto each sandwich, sprinkle with parsley and serve immediately. Serves 4.

This recipe compliments of Williams-Sonoma Kitchens.

5 Responses to “Looks Too Good Not to Share”

  1. Dorrie says:

    just got to thinking today…. whatever happened to the JS T-shirt??

  2. admin says:

    I sent it to Sue, and from there Im not sure.

    Yum is right nunya :)

  3. Dorrie says:

    Shame on you, you never posted a picture! lol
    I do hope Sue finds time to do something with it…. at the moment she is caught up with real life problems, poor thing.

  4. admin says:

    Sue is the best. I just love her. I sent the T-shirt several months ago, so she may have sent it on. I’m really not sure.

    As far as the picture, I can’t remember if I shared one or not. I did include one in the package, plus I have one for Sunny, but I’m not a fan of having photos of me where everyone can see them, which is why I never post photos of myself on anywhere but facebook because it’s private.

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