DISCLOSURE: This post is sponsored by The Hillshire Brands Company. All comments and opinions are my own.
Every so often you just have to enjoy a delicious sandwich. I think there is undoubtedly nothing better than a French staple grilled cheese sandwich, better known as Croque-Monsieur. In translation, it means Gentlemen’s Crunch.
My favorite way to eat a croque-madame is with a little sunny-side-up egg on top, with a drizzle of hot sauce!
With that being said, you should also try a “Croque Mademoiselle” which is a vegetarian version with cucumber or zucchini and chives.
I genuinely feel like this sandwich instantly transports you back to a French café or charming bistro, where you may have ordered it while sipping on a café au lait.
You may know this sandwich in the USA as a Monte Cristo Sandwich. Nevertheless, it is delicious whatever you call it.
My husband and I devoured it because we absolutely love a good sandwich, especially with premium carved cuts of high-quality meats like Hillshire Farm® Premium Carved Slow Roasted Seasoned Ham.
I took a trip to Walmart and located the packaged lunch meat in the perimeter coolers. There, I found Hillshire Farm Premium Carved Oven Roasted Turkey Breast as well as Hillshire Farm Premium Carved Rotisserie Seasoned Chicken Breast.
Hillshire Farm Premium Carved Meats are perfect for any occasion. You can make an amazing meal in no time. They’re all natural, contain no artificial ingredients, no nitrates, no nitrites, and no artificial preservatives, and are made from only high-quality ingredients
STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTION:
- 3 1/2 tablespoons Unsalted Butter reserve 1/2 tbsp for buttering the bread
- 1 1/2-2 tablespoon/s All-purpose flour substitute 1/4 tbsp Guar gum
- 2-2 1/2 cups Whole milk
- 3 ounces Gruyère Cheese, grated substitute with Swiss Cheese
- 1 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1 Sprigs of Thyme steam removed
- 1/2 tablespoon Melted Unsalted Butter reserved from Bechamel Sauce)
- 8 slices Sandwich Bread preferably rustic, or traditional Brioche toast
- 8 slices Hillshire Farm® Premium Carved Meat, I used Ham
- 8-10 ounces Gruyère Cheese, grated substitute with Swiss Cheese (aged)
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh chives or green onions
Shread the cheeses; Gruyère Cheese and Swiss Cheese. You may use more or less, but I think this is a perfect amount. I like shredding my own cheese and it melts even better when you do it.
Melt the butter over low heat in a small saucepan and add the flour all at once, stirring with a wooden spoon for 2 minutes. Add milk; bring to a simmer. Cook, whisking frequently, until sauce thickens, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add the salt, pepper, grated Gruyere, and the Parmesan and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees with rack in bottom third. Place 8 bread slices on the baking sheet, butter each toast with unsalted butter, then toast for a couple of minutes. After the toast slices are nicely golden take it out of the oven. Just to note that you can toast bread in a large toaster or conventional oven as well if that saves you time.
- Top each with half with bechamel sauce, about 1 tablespoon equally spread, then add slices of the ham and shredded Gruyère. Top with remaining bread.
- On the very top of each sandwich add about 1 more tablespoon of the Bechamel sauce and generous amount of shredded Gruyère.
- Turn the oven broiler on high and transfer the baking sheet with sandwiches in the oven. Broil until the top of the sandwiches with bechamel sauce and cheese begins to bubble, approximately 2 minutes.
- Slice in half and enjoy!
For Croque-Madame add a fried sunny side up egg on the top and serve.
- For Croque-Madame, add a fried sunny-side-up egg on top and serve.
- Gruyère cheese is one of the finest Swiss cheeses. Its taste is nutty and salty when new but varies greatly with age. Since it can be quite pricy, you can substitute with regular Swiss cheese.