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Untraditional Croque Madame or French Ham, Cheese and Egg Sandwich

by Spicie Foodie on April 27, 2012

Croque Madame; sandwich; Paris; French; bread; egg; cheese; ham; gouda; recipe; fast; dinner; lunch; brunch; Spicie Foodie

When we lived in Paris often times Hubby and I headed out for day long exploratory walks of  our Parisian surroundings. Those long walks of never ending boulevards always left us hungry, a lunch break was a must. Unless it was raining, we’d sit at typical Parisian sidewalk cafes. Many of the sidewalk cafes have small round tables, tightly packed in, and all facing towards the hustle and bustle of the street. If we were lucky the sun would shine on us as we ate our lunch.

Croque Madame; sandwich; Paris; French; bread; egg; cheese; ham; gouda; recipe; fast; dinner; lunch; brunch; Spicie Foodie

One of my absolute favorite lunches from a Parisian cafe is Croque Madame, occasionally Croque Monsieur.  Alongside my Croque Madame lunch I always had a cup of cafe creme, and sometimes a glass of red. What could be more perfect, sitting in a cafe enjoying a typical snack all while enjoying the famous Parisian cafe life? Not much.

Croque Madame; sandwich; Paris; French; bread; egg; cheese; ham; gouda; recipe; fast; dinner; lunch; brunch; Spicie Foodie

Croque Madame is a French grilled sandwich made with toast, ham, cheese and a poached or fried egg on top. A variation of Croque Madame is Croque Monsieur, which is the same as previously mentioned but minus the egg. Traditionally the sandwich is made using Gruyere or Emmental cheese and ham, though many other variations also exist. These quick sandwiches first appeared on Parisian menus in 1910 yet nobody seems to know why and how they got the name. Nowadays Croque Madame, Croque Monsieur  and their variations can be found across France in cafes and bars.

Croque Madame; sandwich; Paris; French; bread; egg; cheese; ham; gouda; recipe; fast; dinner; lunch; brunch; Spicie Foodie

Since moving to Prague when the craving for a Croque Madame strikes it is up to us to make our own croque.  But instead of it being lunch we like to have croque for dinner. They are perfect for busy nights or when you want a lighter dinner. I usually don’t stick to the traditional cheeses or pain de mie that is so common with croques. Depending on the type of bread and cheese in the kitchen my Croque Madame take on different looks. This one I made using Gouda and a country flax seed bread. Improvise and adjust to your taste.

(If you would like to publish my recipe on your website please quote Spicie Foodie as the recipe creator, and place a link back to the recipe.)
Croque Madame or French Ham, Cheese and Egg Sandwich
country bread, or your favorite bread
cheese, I’m using Gouda- traditionally Gruyere or Emmental are used
eggs
ham
butter

Heat a grill or large pan. Slice the bread as desired. Melt some butter into hot pan, place the bread in pan add cheese slice(s) and ham then place a bread slice on top. Cook until bottom side begins to toast then flip and toast the other side. Cook until cheese melts. Set aside. (Essentially you make a grilled ham and cheese sandwich.)

Add a little more butter to the pan and fry egg sunny side up. Serve the fried egg on top of grilled sandwich. If desired serve with a small green side salad.

Croque Madame; sandwich; Paris; French; bread; egg; cheese; ham; gouda; recipe; fast; dinner; lunch; brunch; Spicie Foodie

The sunny side up egg, or poached, is a must. The runny, buttery yolk flows down the sandwich and gives you an extra burst of flavor. If you use a hard egg you’ll really miss out on the full Croque Madame experience. Now doesn’t that just look like a delicious mess?

 

in Breakfast,Cheese,Eggs,European,Sandwiches,Snacks

{ 52 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Rosa April 27, 2012 at 6:07 AM

Much better than the cheap croque madame you get from coffees here… Scrumptious and beautiful!

Cheers,

Rosa

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2 Spicie Foodie April 27, 2012 at 10:16 AM

Thanks Rosa, have a great weekend!

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3 Michelle April 27, 2012 at 7:25 AM

Looks so lovely!

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4 Spicie Foodie April 27, 2012 at 10:16 AM

Thank you Michelle!

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5 Priya April 27, 2012 at 5:12 PM

Wish to grab and have this super irresistible sandwich..

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6 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:42 AM

Hope you try it soon!

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7 Lea Ann April 27, 2012 at 8:05 PM

Beautiful sandwich. I’ve only ordered it once in a French Restaurant here in Denver. Some day I’m going to make one … I’ve promised myself. :)

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8 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:43 AM

You should Lea Ann, they are so easy to make.

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9 Joan Nova April 27, 2012 at 10:50 PM

Wow … this makes me want to run out to the store and buy ham and cheese. (I have bread and eggs.) You did a beautiful job! Pinning this one.

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10 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:43 AM

Thank you Joan:)

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11 Jen Laceda | Tartine and Apron Strings April 28, 2012 at 12:35 AM

This is some gorgeous sandwich! For some reason, my sandwiches never look like this! Mine are always flat. That egg on top is making me droooooooooool! Have a great weekend!

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12 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:44 AM

Thank you Jen. I tend to slice the bread thick so that could be why mine look “fluffier” You too!

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13 vianney April 28, 2012 at 12:37 AM

Oh this is one of hubby favorite friday night meals. With a cold beer, he is happy!!

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14 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:44 AM

Sounds perfect!

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15 Nami | Just One Cookbook April 28, 2012 at 2:41 AM

It’s night time but I’m already excited to try this tomorrow brunch. Runny egg yolk… beautiful shot! You are really detail. I like how you put the leaves on the bread and plate. :-) Really cute accent!

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16 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:45 AM

Hehe, thanks for noticing Nami :) I hope you did try it for brunch.

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17 Suzanne Perazzini April 28, 2012 at 4:23 AM

It’s amazing how a soft poached egg can lift so many dishes. We also have similar sandwiches when I can’t think of what to cook but I have never added the egg on top like that. Wil do next time.

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18 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:45 AM

So true, but this on is fried. The egg makes for a heartier meal.

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19 tania@mykitchenstories April 28, 2012 at 5:04 AM

This looks big and crispy and delicious………….

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20 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:45 AM

Thanks Tania!

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21 Flavors of the Sun April 28, 2012 at 12:49 PM

Croque Madame or Monsieur were my “go-to” lunches (and crepes, of course) when I lived in Paris. Your photos are so lovely and inspiring. I’m going down memory lane as I read this.

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22 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:46 AM

Oh yes, let’s not forget the crepes:) Thank you !

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23 susan April 28, 2012 at 1:06 PM

When I went to Paris last year, this was the first thing I ate. It has always been one of my favorite, favorite sandwiches. When I am feeling “thin” this is what I induldge in!

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24 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:46 AM

Glad that you got to try it and in Paris even better.

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25 Ramona April 28, 2012 at 1:09 PM

Sign me up for this lovely sandwich!! Eggs with a sandwich are so enticing!! How I envy you walking the streets of Paris exploring. I was only there for 2 days and it was a “hike” to see as much of the attractions as possible. Someday…. I want go back and do it the way you have done it. :) Have a wonderful weekend! ~ Ramona

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26 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:47 AM

You really have to come back Ramona. Two days in Paris is simply not enough. Then again I doubt a life time in Paris is enough :)

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27 Magic of Spice April 28, 2012 at 2:33 PM

A very delicious mess! Your croque is just gorgeous! This was a favorite of my grandfathers and he would always make me a non ham version :)

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28 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:48 AM

That is so sweet, I would have love to have one made by your grandfather too:) Thanks!

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29 dassana April 28, 2012 at 3:38 PM

i neither have ham nor eggs, but the pics are drool worthy and gorgeous.

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30 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:48 AM

Thanks!

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31 Bloggy April 29, 2012 at 2:09 AM

It is really a great snack for the evening or the breakfast. I am sure it will keep your taste buds happy and you full for few hours to go.

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32 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:48 AM

Really is :)

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33 Hester @ Alchemy in the Kitchen April 29, 2012 at 4:21 AM

Nancy, this looks so much better than any croque Madame I’ve ever been offered in France! This is what I hope for but never get.

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34 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:49 AM

Oh, that is such a sweet compliment Hester. Thank you:)

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35 Liz April 29, 2012 at 9:21 AM

CONGRATS on your Top 9, Nancy….such a gorgeous sandwich!!! Irresistible!

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36 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 10:49 AM

Thanks and you too Miss #1 spot :)

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37 Part Time House Wife April 29, 2012 at 12:26 PM

What a fancy sammy! Looks awesome, bet it tastes amazing with that runny yolk. Wish I could be living a lovely french life ,Even if it’s just for a few weeks ;-) Congrats on top 9!

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38 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 3:23 PM

I think you’re do for a trip to Paris ;) Thank you so much.

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39 Jean (Lemons and Anchovies) April 29, 2012 at 1:20 PM

Hi, Nancy! Your Croque Madame is mouthwateringly beautiful. It’s one of my favorite sandwiches–so simple but really so satisfying. You’ve described the perfect lunch setting in Paris and I agree there’s not much better than that. :)

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40 Spicie Foodie April 29, 2012 at 3:23 PM

Thank you Jean :)

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41 Crystal @ A Lovin' Forkful April 29, 2012 at 3:45 PM

I think this is is my favorite kind of meal. Lovely post and lovely sandwich!

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42 Spicie Foodie April 30, 2012 at 8:50 AM

Definitely a favorite of mine. Thanks!

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43 Priscilla - She's Cookin' April 29, 2012 at 4:04 PM

My fave sandwich in Paris, too :) I love your untraditional version – it’s making me pine for Paris! I’ll be there again in June, yay!

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44 Spicie Foodie April 30, 2012 at 8:50 AM

Thanks Priscilla. Oh, have fun and a croque for me okay ;)

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45 Kristina April 29, 2012 at 6:38 PM

Mmm…theres few things better than a runny egg :) This looks delicious! Congrats on Top 9!!

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46 Spicie Foodie April 30, 2012 at 8:50 AM

Thank you Kristina :)

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47 LP @dishclips April 30, 2012 at 10:39 PM

My favorite thing right now is putting a fried egg on any toasted or hot sandwich. This looks delicious. Thanks for sharing!

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48 Spicie Foodie May 1, 2012 at 6:27 PM

Thank you!

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49 Trix May 1, 2012 at 10:26 AM

Yes, yes, yes, that runny egg is a MUST. I love anything with a fried egg on top, and this sandwich is divine!!!!

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50 Spicie Foodie May 1, 2012 at 6:28 PM

Me too ;) Thanks Ms Trixie

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51 Fender May 10, 2012 at 6:07 PM

Croque Madame & Monsieur are a favorite of mine. I’m having it for supper tonight. Thanks for your take on it!

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52 Spicie Foodie May 10, 2012 at 7:07 PM

Yummy and enjoy your supper!

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