If you’ve never had a Monte Cristo sandwich, we highly recommend giving it a try! First, though, what even is a Monte Cristo Sandwich? Legend says that the sandwich was named after Alexander Dumas’ The Count of Monte Cristo, as an homage to the French origins of the dish.
It’s also said to be a version of the Croque-monsieur, which is a ham and cheese sandwich done as only the French can: with gruyere cheese, béchamel sauce, and a stint in the oven so everything bakes nice and good.
In any case, that gives you an idea of the Monte Cristo Sandwich. It’s still a ham and cheese sandwich, but it’s also part French toast. You can even add a sprinkle of powdered sugar to make it more French toasty. Some people even enjoy a little bit of maple syrup with this. If you want to go that route, I’d recommend sticking to regular French toast, though. Cheese and maple syrup might be a bit much in the department of contrasting flavors!
At any rate, this sandwich is one of those that you won’t soon forget. It’s a classic ham and cheese that gets dipped in batter and fried. What’s not to love?
I haven’t tried it, but some people will use sliced turkey instead of ham. You can also try it on different types of bread, but the brioche is nice because it’s such a light bread that it really soaks up the batter well.
I should warn you that this is a pretty decadent sandwich. You can probably tell just from the ingredients! But it is nice to have something to counter all that richness. A glass of cold orange juice or hot coffee is nice, but a side of fruit and some water is good, too.Print
20-Minute Monte Cristo Sandwich
An interesting combination of ingredients puts Monte Cristo sandwich in both categories of breakfast and lunch.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- Yield: 1 sandwich 1x
- Category: Breakfast
- 1 teaspoon mayonnaise
- 2 thick slices brioche bread
- 1 teaspoon grainy mustard
- 2 slices Jarlsberg cheese 2–3 ounces sliced
- smoked ham
- 1 large egg
- 1 tablespoon half-and-half
- 2 teaspoons unsalted butter
- Confectioners’ sugar, for sprinkling
- Strawberry or raspberry preserves
- Spread the mayonnaise on one slice of bread. Spread the mustard on the other slice of bread.
- Top each slice of bread with a slice of cheese. Add the ham on top of one of the slices and place the other piece of bread on top, cheese- side down.
- In a small bowl, whisk the egg and half-and-half together.
- In a small skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Once the butter starts to sizzle, dip the sandwich into the egg and coat evenly on both sides.
- Add the sandwich to the skillet and cook until brown, then ﬂip and brown the other side, 2 to 3 minutes per side.
- Serve warm, with a sprinkle of confectioners’ sugar and a side of preserves.
Have you tried this Monte Cristo sandwich? What do you think? Is it breakfast or lunch?