Croque monsieur is your humble ham and cheese sandwich slathered in cheese sauce and baked until hot and golden and bubbly. This is them in casserole form for ease of making ahead and feeding a crowd.
These are good for brunches or lunches or dinners. You could even make them happen for breakfasts, if you wanted. Is there a time of day we wouldn't accept a ham and cheese sandwich??
Add a fried egg for a croque madame!
Croque Monsieur Casserole
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for pan
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups hot milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- Pinch nutmeg
- 3 cups shredded gruyère
- 16 slices white sandwich bread, crusts removed
- Dijon mustard
- 8 ounces sliced ham
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Butter a 9 by 13 inch baking dish.Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Once bubbling, add the flour. Cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Slowly pour in the milk and continue cooking and stirring until smooth and thickened - about 5 minutes. Reduce heat if mixture begins to boil. Remove from heat and stir in the salt, pepper, nutmeg, and 1 cup of the shredded cheese.
To toast the bread, place on baking sheet and bake 7-8 minutes, until crisp.Arrange half the toasted bread in the prepared baking dish. Spread with a thin layer of Dijon, arrange sliced ham over top, sprinkle with half the remaining shredded cheese, and top with remaining toasted bread. Pour cheese sauce over the sandwiches and sprinkle with the remaining shredded cheese. Bake for 10 minutes, then broil for 3-5, until tops are browned and bubbly.
Adapted from Ina Garten.