My Breakfast is Better Than Yours: The Croque-Madame

What did you have for breakfast when you woke up this weekend? Unless it was a croque-madame (which I didn’t even know about until this weekend), you lose. What you’re looking at is the female version of a croque-monsieur, which is a glorified ham and cheese sandwich with bread soaked in a tasty sauce. I’ll let you figure out why this one’s considered the female┬áversion.

Anyway, I was lucky enough for my girlfriend to have seen it made on The Chew, which inspired her to make it for breakfast. It peaked my interest right away — pretty much just because Michael Symon is on The Chew and I’d love to hang out with him and have a beer. But other than that, this concoction has everything a breakfast should be.

Think of what you’d order at the diner. If you have any wits to you, you’re going to order eggs, some delicious meat (bacon or ham), toast, and homefries. But let’s be honest, most of us just use the homefries as filler, to soak up the “dippy egg” or sunny-side up egg. This breakfast has it all and more. Not only does it have a delicious, savory meat, but it also includes melted cheese in between a tasty baked bread with crispy toast.

Further, the toast has been soaked in a cream (bechamel sauce) made of milk and nutmeg, giving the whole meal a bit of a sweet undertone. Finally, thanks to the females out there, the fried or poached egg crowns the sandwich. To eat it the right way, break the yoke first, and then cut into the rest of it. Get a little bit of everything in every bite and there’s no need for those homefries.

The Croque-Madame

Makes 6 sandwiches

Pre-heat oven to 400

Bechamel Sauce:

  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups milk (the g/f used 2 %)
  • 1/8 cup of flour
  • Salt and pepper to your liking
  • Grated nutmeg to your liking (“just a pinch”)

Melt butter in a small saucepan on low heat. Once the butter is melted, whisk in the flour until mixed.Slowly whisk in the milk and cook while stirring until thick. This takes about 15 minutes. If it’s taking longer, turn up the heat. Add the nutmeg, salt and pepper to taste.


  • 12 slices of French or Italian bread — pick something with a nice crust on it
  • A little bit of butter
  • 1/2 lb of “off the bone” sliced deli ham
  • Block of Swiss cheese, grated
  • 6 eggs
  • Chopped chives
Line a cooking sheet with foil, lightly spread butter on each slice of bread. Put six slices, butter side face down on the pan. Spread bechamel sauce on each slice evenly to the edge of each slice. Put ham on each slice, evenly dividing amongst all six slices. Put some of the grated Wwiss on each slice of ham, but leave some cheese to top the sandwich off! Top each sandwich with the other slices of bread and spread bechamel sauce on each of those slices. Finally, top the sandwiches with the rest of the grated Swiss!
Bake in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes, until the cheese is melted, gooey and golden brown.
While the sandwiches are cooking, fry the eggs in a pan to your liking. I prefer sunny-side-up/dippy eggs so that the yolk will run over the sandwiches. When the sandwiches come out, top each sandwich with an egg and chopped chives. Serve to your family and friends!

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  • holler May 15, 2012  

    you forgot the beer.

  • erica May 15, 2012  

    home fries are the whole POINT of breakfast!

  • hungry monster May 16, 2012  

    This is literally my favorite sandwich! I like it with turkey, too. Plus, I leave the sauce off (maybe that’s blasphemous, but it makes it healthier!).

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