Stefano Faita

mile-high croque monsieur

By In The Kitchen With Stefano Faita


Béchamel Sauce
3 tbsp. butter
3 tbsp. flour
3 to 3 1/2 cups milk
Pinch nutmeg, freshly grated
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 cup grated Gruyère cheese
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup chopped mixed herbs, such as parsley, chives and tarragon

Mile-High Croque Monsieur Sandwich
1 loaf French bread, cut into 16 (1/2-inch) slices
Butter, room temperature, to taste
Dijon mustard, to taste
16 slices Gruyère cheese
10 ounces sliced ham
10 ounces sliced smoked turkey
3 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto
Parmesan cheese, grated for top of sandwich
Gherkins, for serving (optional)
Pickled pearl onions, for serving (optional)


Béchamel Sauce
Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and stir to combine to make a roux. Continue to cook and stir, about 2 to 3 minutes. Gradually whisk in milk, making sure to incorporate the roux into the milk. Continue to whisk mixture and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, whisking frequently, until sauce is thickened, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, and nutmeg. Remove from heat and stir in cheese and herbs. (Makes about 3 1/4 cups.)

Mile-High Croque Monsieur Sandwich
Preheat broiler.

As béchamel sauce is cooking, assemble the sandwiches.

Toast bread slices under broiler on each side until lightly golden brown, about 1 to 2 minutes per side.

Spread one side of each bread slice with butter and Dijon mustard. Place 1 slice of Gruyère on each piece of bread and broil again until melted, about 1 minute.

Assemble each sandwich by layering bread, ham, bread, smoked turkey, bread, prosciutto and bread. Repeat to make 4 sandwiches.

Place sandwiches on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Pour Béchamel sauce evenly over top of each sandwich, about ½ cup per sandwich. Broil one last time until top of sandwich is lightly golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes.

Cut each sandwich in half. Serve with gherkins and pickled onions, if desired.

Yield: 4 to 8 servings.