Croque Monsieur

September 10, 2009 9:24:06 AM PDT
This is no ordinary grilled cheese sandwich!Serves 4

Ingredients

8 slices firm textured sandwich bread, crusts removed
8 thin slices of good quality baked ham
1 cup grated Gruyere cheese + additional 8 oz. grated for topping
1 cup grated Emmenthaler cheese
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
Béchamel sauce

BÉCHAMEL SAUCE

1 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 tsp. flour
1cup warm milk
pinch salt
pinch ground white pepper
pinch ground nutmeg

METHOD

In a saucepan, over low-medium heat, melt the butter completely; sprinkle in flour, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon to form a soft roux, approximately 2 minutes. Slowly add the warm milk, whisking constantly until the sauce is thickened and smooth. Remove from heat; add pinch of salt, pepper and nutmeg; set aside.

Croque Assembly

1. Preheat the broiler.

2. In a large skillet, melt butter over medium high heat. Brown only one surface of each bread slice.

3. Lower heat. Assemble sandwiches in skillet:
Top 4 slices of bread each with 1oz. Gruyere and 1oz. Emmenthaler; place 2 slices of ham on top of the cheeses; top with remaining cheeses and close sandwiches with the 4 remaining bread slices.

4. Remove "croques" from skillet and place on a baking sheet.

5. Generously coat the top of each with béchamel sauce and sprinkle with remaining Gruyere.

6. Broil 3-5 minutes, or until the tops are browned and bubbling. Serve hot.


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