One of my favorite movies to watch while I am just hanging out or cleaning, or just need some background noise is "It's Complicated". Partially, because I love watching all the food that they make in it! Primarily, the part where Meryl Streep is making a small dish for Steve Martin, and Alec Baldwin comes in and finishes it off because it is soooo good! What is this yummy creation that she makes? Well, it is called a Croque Monsieur, and as I did some research, I found out it is the French version of a ham and cheese sandwich.
In France, from what I understand, the sandwich is made using bread similar to our basic loaf of white bread, but when I watched the movie, part of what I loved about it, is it looked as if she used a rustic french bread, one of my favorties out there. Also, the ham is sliced very thin...so, I made a few revisions, as well as simplified it. A typical Croque Monsieur will have a bechemel type sauce poured on top, but I wanted this to be something I might be able to make with items I have on hand...
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. On one side of:
1-2 slices of rustic french bread
Gently drizzle, on one side of the bread:
Sprinkle, on the oiled side of the bread:
Salt & Pepper
On the other side of the bread, spread:
A light layer of butter
On the buttered side of the bread, add:
A generous layer of very thinly sliced ham
2 slices of lorrain swiss cheese
Optionally, sprinkle some more salt and pepper on the top of the cheese. Place the open faced sandwiches on a baking sheet (I used my metal round pizza pan, because it has holes through the bottom to allow air to crisp up the bottom of the bread).
Bake for about 5 minutes, then check the sandwich. You may need to keep it in the oven for up to 15 minutes; it depends on your oven. If you would like, broil for about 2 minutes to get a crisp on top.
Serve with a side salad, just to add some greens :-)
Note: I made this for Matthew for lunch one Sunday while we watched football, and he was a big fan! A definite success!!!