By: Sarah Kelly

This classic French hot sandwich is really a fancy grilled ham and cheese sandwich. This recipe is easier than it looks and it’s a great addition to your sandwich go-to repertoire. 

I like using toasted brioche- it is soft enough to absorb the mornay but still toasts up nice, but it’s also good on sturdier bread like a rustic sourdough or anything you have on hand. Just be sure to sear it up in a pan with lots of butter before topping it with the cheese sauce. 

Kurobuta ham makes this a sandwich fit for a king (or queen)! Please, eat this with a fork + knife.



  • 12 to 18 thin slices leftover Kurobuta ham, about 4 to 5 oz per sandwich. Buy Now
  • 8 oz. Gruyere cheese, shredded.
  • 8 sliced Brioche bread
  • Mustard- preferably Dijon
  • Mayonnaise
  • 4 eggs
  • Butter for the pan


  • 1 ½ cups milk
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 oz (about ¼ cup) shredded Gruyere cheese


Spread mustard and mayo on each slice of bread.
Place the sliced ham and shredded cheese, about 2 tablespoons cheese on each sandwich, on the bread and close the sandwich.
Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add some butter and grill the sandwiches, two at a time. Toast each side about 2 minutes until golden brown. Watch for burning the bread especially if you are using brioche.
Transfer the toasted sandwiches to a cookie sheet. You will continue to heat them in the oven later so don't worry if the cheese isn’t completely melted.
Pour the slightly cooled mornay over the tops of the sandwiches. Do not spread. The heat will cause the sauce to melt in the oven.
Place the toasted sandwiches topped with mornay sauce under the broiler for 2 minutes or so until the cheese sauce is bubbly.
While the sandwiches are in the oven, make your fried or poached egg. (You can omit the egg and serve a Croque Monsieur, but a fried egg makes this special.)
Pull the tray from the oven and serve the egg on top of the sandwich. Serve hot.


Heat small saucepan on medium heat. Add the butter and let melt but not brown. Stir in the flour and whisk with a fork. Let cook while stirring about 1 min. Do not brown.
Add the milk and spices. Bring to a simmer and whisk with fork breaking up any lumps and stirring to prevent burning on the bottom.
Turn to medium low heat and let simmer 2 minutes. Whisk in cheese until totally smooth. Turn off heat.