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Croque Monsieur

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Looking for a Gruyere substitute? Give Fontina, Comte, or even a sharp cheddar a try.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 8

Photography: William Brinson

Source: Martha Stewart Living, November 2012

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, divided
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 long loaf rustic bread, such as ciabatta (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 3/4 pound sliced ham
  • 4 cups grated Gruyere cheese (about 8 ounces)
  • 1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese (1 ounce)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees with rack in bottom third. Heat milk in a saucepan over medium heat until hot, about 5 minutes. Melt butter in another saucepan over medium heat; add flour, whisk to combine, and cook 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons thyme, then gradually whisk in milk. Simmer bechamel 2 minutes, whisking. Remove from heat, and add 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.

  2. Cut top crust off bread; slice loaf in half horizontally. Fill sandwich with mustard, ham, and half the Gruyere. Toast on a baking sheet until cheese is melted and top is golden brown.

  3. Remove from oven. Preheat broiler. Spread bechamel on top, and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Broil until golden brown and bubbling, 6 to 7 minutes. Remove from oven; garnish with pepper and remaining thyme. Let sit 10 minutes before cutting.

Reviews Add a comment

  • pfox003comcast
    18 JUN, 2017
    You can never go wrong with a delicious Bechamel sauce - my favorite!
    Reply
  • MS12303707
    18 JUN, 2017
    No, you do NOT put the top back on. The top is the bechamel slightly browned.
    Reply
  • cme4basketscom
    21 JAN, 2017
    So maybe a silly question but when you are toasting the sandwich, it's a compete sandwich? I just wonder about the top of the bread toasting without the cheese melting. So basically you have bread, meat/cheese, then bread and then toast? Thanks!!
    Reply
  • jenspendsless
    27 JUN, 2015
    I have yet to find a Martha Stewart recipe that I don't love, and this is no exception. This was my first time ever making bechamel, and it turned out to be very easy. The rest of the recipe came together just as easily. My whole family thought it was delicious, from my husband right down to my two-year-old. Someday I'd like to try making this for a larger group using small ciabatta rolls.
    Reply
  • amsanborn
    24 APR, 2013
    This was delicious and easy. I made it today for lunch with my friends and kids and everyone loved it. Well, not the three and four year old girls, but my 20 month old son gobbled it up. It was nice to be able to cut different sized servings and looked pretty on a big cutting board at the table. I served it with tomato soup and carrot salad.
    Reply