Make a French Bistro classic at home! This easy, savory, pressed sandwich of ham, imported Gruyere, and a luscious cheese sauce makes a wonderful brunch, lunch, or speedy dinner. Fun fact! A Croque Madame is topped with a fried egg reminiscent of a ladies’ hat, while a Croque Monsieur goes eggless and “hatless”!
In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 1 TB butter. Add flour and whisk for 1 minute. Slowly whisk in milk until smooth to make a Bechamel sauce. Continue whisking and simmer for 2-3 minutes or until slightly thick. Remove from heat, whisk in 1/2 cup shredded imported Gruyere cheese, and season to taste with salt and pepper. (Note: when you add cheese to a Bechamel sauce it becomes a Mornay sauce!)
Spread two slices of bread generously with Mornay sauce. Lay 4 slices of ham on top of sauce on each, and then top each with 1/4 cup of imported Gruyere cheese. Top with a slice of bread and press down lightly.
Melt remaining 2 TB butter in a large oven safe skillet over medium heat. Cook sandwiches cheese side down for 2-3 minutes, flip over and cook for 1 minute. Spread remaining Mornay sauce on top of each sandwich and top evenly with remaining grated imported Gruyere cheese.
Place in a 400 degree oven or under the broiler of your oven or toaster oven for 2-3 minutes until top is bubbling and lightly browned.
While your sandwiches are in the oven, melt remaining 1 TB butter in a nonstick skillet over medium heat and pan fry 2 eggs to your liking. Top each sandwich with an egg and enjoy!