Croque Monsieur / Croque Madame
2 tbls butter
2 tbls flour
¾ cup milk
⅛ teaspoon salt
Dash of black pepper
¾ cup grated Gruyere cheese, divided
1 tbls grated Parmesan cheese
⅛ tsp nutmeg
4 thick slices sturdy white bread
1 tbls Dijon mustard
4 thin slices cooked ham
Preheat oven to 400℉.
To make Bechamel sauce, melt butter in small sauce pan. Add the flour, stir until the mixture bubbles. Whisk milk into flour mixture and simmer, whisking constantly, until the sauce is thickened.
Remove from heat and stir in 2 tbls Gruyere cheese, 1 tbls Parmesan cheese and nutmeg. Stir until cheeses melt.
To assemble sandwiches, spread some Bechamel sauce on two slices of bread. Top each slice with 2 slices of ham and sprinkle half of remaining Gruyere over ham. Spread Dijon mustard on remaining two slices of bread and place, mustard side down, on top of ham and cheese.
Put sandwiches on baking sheet coated with non-stick cooking spray or lined with parchment paper. Cover with remaining Bechamel sauce and Gruyere cheese. Bake for 5-7 minutes until cheese melts and sandwich is heated through. Place under broiler for a few moments, if desired, to brown top of sandwich.
For a Croque Madame: Top with a fried or poached egg.
Hack: Bechamel sauce can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Cover surface with plastic wrap to avoid forming a skin.
Hack: Make a double recipe of Bechamel sauce. Freeze extra portion to serve over pasta or vegetables!