ina garten's croque monsieur

ina garten\'s croque monsieur
ingredients
all
1 tbsp butter
1 1/2 tbsp flour
1 cup milk
warmed until hot but not boiling, preferably regular milk vs. low fat
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 pinch nutmeg
1/4 cup gruyere
grated
1/4 cup parmesan
freshly grated
8 slices sandwich bread
crusts removed
dijon mustard
4 oz ham
preferrably Virginia ham, sliced but not paper thin
1 1/4 cup gruyere
grated
1 1/4 cup gruyere
grated
4 whole eggs
optional to make a croque madame
We saw Ina Garten make this on TV and thought we'd give it a shot since my husband is a big fan of the croque monsieur. The preparation was somewhat involved, but the sandwich was so tasty that it was well-worth the effort... and the calories. The croque monsieur is a delicious option for brunch.

Adapted from Barefoot Contessa.
1
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
2
Warm milk in a small pot until hot - small bubbles along the edges and steam rising - but not boiling.
3
Melt the butter over low heat in a small (separate) saucepan and add the flour all at once, stirring with a wooden spoon for 2 minutes.
4
Slowly pour the hot milk into the butter–flour mixture and cook, whisking constantly, until the sauce is thickened.
5
Off the heat add the salt, pepper, nutmeg, 1/4 cup grated Gruyere, and the Parmesan and reserve.
6
To toast the bread, use a toaster, or place the slices on 2 baking sheets and bake for 5 minutes. Turn each slice and bake for another 2 minutes, until toasted.
7
Lightly brush half the toasted breads with mustard, add 2 slices of ham to each, and sprinkle with Gruyere.
8
Top with another piece of toasted bread. Slather the tops with the cheese sauce, sprinkle with the remaining Gruyere, and bake the sandwiches for 5 minutes. Turn on the broiler and broil for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the topping is bubbly and lightly browned. Transfer to a plate with a spatula. If desired, top with an over easy egg at this point. Serve hot.