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French Recipe for Croque-monsieur and Croque-Madame : You cannot beat melted cheese on bread!

Updated: Jan 12, 2021

The Croque Monsieur sandwich was referred to by name for the first time on a Parisian cafe menu in 1910 and its first mention in print appears in Proust’s 1918 work In Search of Lost Time. Croque monsieur and croque madame are both French dishes that are essentially grilled ham and cheese with a white sauce. … The difference between the two is that croque madame has a fried or poached egg on top.

croque monsieur (French pronunciation: ​[crock meusieuh]; French for “mister crunch”) is a baked or fried boiled ham and cheese sandwich. The dish originated in French cafés and bars as a quick snack. … The sandwich’s first recorded appearance on a Paris café menu was in 1910. So I will called it a Brunch French Sandwich: perfect for Sunday Brunch to French it Up and Enjoy.

As anyone who has visited Paris knows, a very popular lunchtime meal at cafes and smaller eateries in the City of Light—and indeed throughout all of France—is the croque monsieur, a toasted ham and cheese sandwich that is one of the true staples of simple French cuisine.

  1. Etape 1 : Beurrez les 8 tranches de pain de mie sur une seule face. Posez 1 tranche de fromage sur chaque tranche de pain de mie. Posez 1 tranche de jambon plié en deux sur 4 tranches de pain de mie. Recouvrez avec les autres tartines (face non beurrée au dessus).

  2. Etape 2 : Dans un bol mélanger le fromage râpé avec le lait, le sel, le poivre et la muscade.

  3. Etape 3 : Répartissez le mélange sur les croque-monsieur.

  4. Etape 4 : Placez sur une plaque au four sous le grill pendant 10 mn.

Note de l’auteur:

This tale of the sandwich’s creation dates back to the year 1901 and a Paris brasserie on the Boulevard des Capucines. Having run out of baguettes for the restaurant’s sandwich of the day, the chef took a loaf of pain de mie (similar to American sandwich bread), sliced it, placed ham and cheese between the slices and baked it to crispiness.

This tale even includes how the name croque monsieur came about. The name is derived from the crispy bread of the sandwich (from the French verb croquer, which means “to bite,” and from a casual comment from the brasserie’s chef about the origins of the ham in the sandwich. When asked by a customer about the meat, the chef reportedly gestured toward another customer—likely the neighborhood butcher—and replied “C’est la viande de monsieur (It’s that guy’s meat).” And voila–le croque monsieur.

The difference between the two is that croque madame has a fried or poached egg on top.

I searched and searched for another difference, and you know what? There’s one more.

Croque monsieur is usually made with a French toast – the egg goes in the bread instead of on top. It’s mentioned in a cooking video from Martha Stewart’s website.

What differentiates the sandwiches from regular grilled ham and cheese is the bechamel sauce.

What makes them different from Monte Cristo sandwiches, is that the Monte Cristo involves the entire sandwich being dipped into an egg batter.

Pour que les croque-monsieur soient plus croustillants, passer les tranches quelques secondes au grille pain avant de les beurrer. Accompagner d’une salade verte.


  1. 8 tranches de pain de mie

  2. 50 g de beurre mou

  3. 4 tranches de jambon

  4. 8 tranches de fromagespécial croque-monsieur

  5. 100 g de gruyère râpé

  6. 4 cuillères à soupe de lait

  7. 1 pincée de muscade

  8. Poivre

  9. Sel

The main ingredient in the sandwich is thinly sliced ham, typically topped with Emmental or Gruyere cheese. The sandwich is then buttered and grilled to crispiness. The croque monsieur is then usually topped with béchamel sauce (and perhaps a sprinkling of grated cheese) and placed under the broiler for a moment or two. (Many cafes and restaurants nowadays take shortcuts in preparing the sandwich, and just assemble all the ingredients and shove the entire concoction under the broiler to cook.)

When topped with a poached or lightly fried egg, the sandwich is called a croque madame, so named because the egg is said to resemble a woman’s hat. That particular sandwich name dates to about the year 1960.

Most cafes, bistros and brasseries offer only the standard croque monsieur and croque madame, but there are variations that can be had at eateries specializing in sandwich making or those attempting to upgrade their croque offerings, including by many up-and-coming chefs anxious to create their own classic sandwiches. Sometimes certain ingredients are added to give the sandwich an international flair, such as a Scandinavian flavor or Spanish taste.

CROQUE-MONSIEUR REVISITÉ: Étapes de préparation

  1. Préchauffer le four à 200°C.

  2. Emporte-piècer les tranches de pain de mie.

  3. Beurrer les tranches de pain de mie, face beurrée sur une feuille de cuisson.

  4. Casser un œuf dans le trou du pain.

  5. Mettre du gruyère, des tranches d’oignon et d’ail, du sel et du poivre puis décorer avec les maïs.

  6. Enfourner jusqu’à la cuisson souhaitée de l’œuf, environ 15 minutes (selon les fours et la texture souhaitée).

  7. A consommer avec une sauce piquante.

Common variations include:

  1. croque poulet that replaces the ham with grilled chicken;

  2. croque provencal that include a slice of tomato;

  3. croque auvergnat made with bleu d’Auvergne cheese;

  4. croque gagnet made with Gouda cheese and andouille sausage;

  5. croque norvegien that uses smoked salmon in place of ham;

  6. croque tartiflette that includes slices of potatoes and Reblochon cheese;

  7. croque bolognese (also commonly called the croque boum-boum) made with Bolognese sauce;

  8. croque senor that includes salsa;

  9. and croque Hawaiian that includes a slice of grilled pineapple.




  1. 8 oz. cottage cheese

  2. 4 eggs

  3. 1 tbsp ground psyllium husk powder

  4. 4 tbsp butter or coconut oil

  5. 51⁄3 oz. smoked deli ham

  6. 51⁄3 oz. cheddar cheese or other cheese of your liking

  7. ½ finely chopped red onion


  1. 2 eggs

  2. 2 tbsp butter

  3. 1½ oz. baby spinach

  4. 4 tbsp olive oil

  5. ½ tbsp red wine vinegar

  6. salt and pepper

  1. Whisk the eggs in a bowl. Mix in the cottage cheese. Add ground psyllium husk powder while stirring to incorporate it smoothly, without lumps. Let the mixture rest for five minutes until the batter has thickened.

  2. Place a frying pan over medium heat. Add a generous amount of butter and fry the batter like small pancakes for a couple of minutes on each side, until they are golden. Make two pancakes per serving.

  3. Assemble a sandwich with sliced ham and cheese between two of the warm pancakes. Add finely chopped onion on top.

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