Friday, April 8, 2011

Croque Madame - WI style!

As poetically stated by my husband, in a mix of awe and terror, as he watched me build this monster sandwich:  "I mean this in a good way... but is this sandwich going to give me a heart attack?"

The answer, if done correctly, is yes...

I do love eggs.  I also love breakfast for dinner.  I also ALSO love cheese.  And I live in Cudahy, WI.  Home of Patrick Cudahy and their fine pork related products.  Which means I can do this one almost 100% locally. 

I would do nothing different.  I know some Croque Madame purists will be very upset at my cheese choice, but it was smokey and just a little sweet and went so well with the ham.  I used buttermilk in the cheese sauce, because that was all I had two cups of.  I felt like it made the sauce separate a little, but it added a very pleasant tangy-ness, and the sauce didn't seem grainy at all when it was eaten, so I would probably do that again.  I wouldn't go out of my way to buy buttermilk, though, because I think regular milk (or cream if you're really going for that heart attack feeling) would work fine.

This recipe is supposed to serve four, and I didn't reduce the cheese sauce, so I had a lot left over.  I think I used ham for four...

Croque Madame - WI Style
Recipe modified from

  • 5 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 3 tbsp all-purpose flour 
  • 2 cups buttermilk 
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 1/3 cups freshly grated cheese.  (I used Carr Valley Apple Smoked Cheddar.  Try it.  It is super good.  Or be boring and just use Gruyere like you're supposed to.)
  • 4 slices, thick sliced bread
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp mayo
  • 2 sandwiches worth (however thick you want your sandwiches to be) thinly sliced cooked ham
  • 2 large eggs

Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a 1- to 1 1/2-quart heavy saucepan over moderately low heat, then whisk in flour and cook roux, whisking, 3 minutes. Whisk in milk and bring to a boil, whisking constantly. Reduce heat and simmer, whisking occasionally, 5 minutes. Whisk in salt, pepper, nutmeg, and 1/3 cup cheese until cheese is melted. Remove from heat.

Spread 1 1/2 tablespoons sauce evenly over each of 2 slices of bread, then sprinkle evenly with remaining cheese. Mix together mustard and mayo and evenly on remaining 4 bread slices and top with ham, dividing it evenly, then invert onto cheese-topped bread to form sandwiches. 

Preheat broiler.

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a 12-inch nonstick, oven proof skillet over moderately low heat, then cook sandwiches, turning over once, until golden, 3 to 4 minutes total. 

Top each sandwich with 1/3 cup sauce, spreading evenly. Broil sandwiches in skillet 4 to 5 inches from heat until sauce is bubbling and golden in spots, 2 to 3 minutes

Meanwhile, heat remaining tablespoon butter in nonstick skillet over moderate heat until foam subsides, then crack eggs into skillet and season with salt and pepper. Fry eggs, covered, until whites are just set and yolks are still runny, about 3 minutes. Top each sandwich with a fried egg and serve immediately.

I served this with a mixed greens salad (to help my heart feel like it wasn't going to explode) and the last of the non-local ranch dressing.  

Non Local Ingredients:
  • flour (but I'm out of that, so I'm on the hunt for local flour)
  • salt, pepper, nutmeg
  • mustard
  • mayo
  • ranch dressing

No comments:

Post a Comment