Grilled Cheese Sandwich Recipe
This grilled cheese sandwich recipe is called a croque-monsieur in France. It comes to us from Jon Peder, who publishes a wonderful website all about sandwiches - Great Sandwich. Jon's site has many tasty recipes and he is always adding more. I don't know about you, but at times I need new ideas when it comes to sandwich making and this site is a big help.
The Croque-Monsieur and Its Variants
The first appearance of the term croque-monsieur was somewhere around the turn of the 20th century, but the exact origin of the name for this sandwich is lost in history.
I have seen it suggested that a croque-monsieur translates to crispy mister in English, and although this is cute and memorable, I don't believe it is entirely accurate. The French verb croquer does not have an exact equivalent in English, but one of its meanings is to bite into something crunchy or noisy. So the name for this sandwich sounds like encouraging words to go ahead and have a bite.
Whatever the original meaning of the name, this is a very popular sandwich throughout France. It is frequently sold, alongside slices of quiche, pizza and paninis, from quick serve sandwich stands (known as snacks) in shopping centers, train stations, and road side rest stops. People also make them at home, frequently using an electric sandwich grill.
There are endless variations on a croque-monsieur and with each one a new fun name is invented. Top a grilled cheese sandwich recipe with a fried egg, which perhaps resembles the wide brimmed hat of a lady, and it becomes a croque-madame. Concoct a diet version and it might be called a croque-mademoiselle. Here's one that a reader sent in that has a slice of pineapple - a croque Hawaii. I bet you can think of your own!
Here's Jon's notes and photo for a tasty grilled cheese sandwich recipe:
"I just made this croque-monsieur sandwich with great success! I did not make the cheese sauce, but I'll post the recipe for it anyway.
As you can see in the picture, the sandwich looks like a mess, and so will your kitchen when you're done! But when you take your first bite of the croque-monsieur you'll forget all about the mess in your kitchen.
Croque Monsieur Sandwiches
Preparation time: 20 minutes without cheese sauce
- 1 cup (4 ounces) grated Swiss cheese
- 1/4 cup light cream
- 8 slices bread
- 8 slices boiled ham
- 2 eggs, slightly beaten
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Cheese sauce (recipe below)
- Combine Swiss cheese and cream to make a paste. Spread mixture on each slice of bread.
- Place a slice of ham on each slice of bread. Close to form a sandwich.
- Beat together eggs, milk and salt in a shallow dish. Dip bread on both sides in egg/milk mixture. Fry on lightly buttered griddle or in skillet until brown on both sides and cheese has melted.
- Serve alone or with cheese sauce.
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Cheddar cheese
- Cherry tomatoes (optional garnish)
- Green pepper (optional garnish)
- Melt butter in 1 quart saucepan.
- Blend in flour and mustard.
- Remove from heat and stir in milk.
- Heat to a boil stirring constantly.
- Boil and stir 1 minute.
- Remove from heat, stir in cheese until melted.
Garnish with sliced cherry tomato and green pepper, if desired.
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