If you’re looking for a way to spruce up breakfast, Croque Madames are the perfect ham-and-cheese combination.
"Croque Madame is a wonderful classic dish that dates back to 1910 Paris Bistros,” says Chef Eric Starkman. “Its flavors and textures have made it an enduring bistro staple dish even more than 100 years later."
As executive chef of Nice Matin, New York City's self-proclaimed "essential French brasserie and wine destination of the Upper West Side," Starkman serves delectable croque madames to smiling customers for lunch and dinner. Today, he shares his recipe so you can re-create the dining experience at home with a simple side of salad or chips.
A croque madame is essentially a ham and cheese sandwich with a few elevated additions. The croque madame is inspired by its partner, the croque monsieur, but while the croque monsieur features bechamel sauce inside the sandwich, croque madames bring the sauce out and top with a fried egg.
Chef Starkman’s iteration of the french favorite is all about his home-made bechamel. Utilizing both gruyere and parmesan, the cheesy flavor envelops the sandwich inside and out. For an added punch, add a pinch of nutmeg.
For the perfect ending, add dijon mustard to the bread and an over-easy egg. Be ready to cut through the yolk, and let it infuse the sandwich with creamy glory.
See also: Weekly Recipe: H Woo Lee's Bone Marrow Pappardelle
Photography by: Courtesy Nice Matin