Smothered Ham & Cheese Sandwiches

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Fried eggs, creamy fontina cheese, and rich fig preserves up the ante on our Southern spin on the classic French croque madame.

Smothered Ham & Cheese Sandwiches
 
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup whole milk
  • ¼ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup fig preserves
  • 8 slices sourdough bread
  • 4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 8 ounces fontina cheese, thinly sliced
  • 8 ounces sliced honey ham
  • ½ cup grated Gruyère cheese
  • 4 Essential Fried Eggs (recipe follows)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 450°.
  2. In a small cast-iron Dutch oven, melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour until smooth; cook until bubbly, about 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk until smooth; cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 2 minutes. Whisk in Parmesan, salt, and pepper until smooth. Remove from heat.
  3. Spread fig preserves onto 4 bread slices. Spread mustard onto remaining bread slices. Divide fontina and ham among 4 bread slices; cover with remaining bread slices. Place sandwiches on a cast-iron pizza pan or baking sheet. Spoon cheese sauce over sandwiches; sprinkle with Gruyère.
  4. Bake until cheese is melted and golden brown, about 15 minutes. Top with Essential Fried Eggs.

Essential Fried Egg
 
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 large egg
  • ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. In an 8-inch cast-iron skillet, melt butter over medium-low heat. Gently crack egg into skillet, and fry, covered, until yolk is set, 3 to 4 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

 

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