Cheese and ham sandwich, the French version

My previous post was about a delicious cheese and ham sandwich made of croissant, and Spanish ham and cheese served as a quick snack in Madrid. Cheese and ham sandwich is nothing unusual, but this combination I tasted the first time (>>>). This one reminded me of another kind of cheese and ham sandwich that I ate a month earlier in Paris. These were Croque Monsieur and Croque Madame.

The Croque Monsieur and Croque Madame are classic French sandwiches. While the exact origins of these sandwiches are not definitively known, they are believed to have emerged in France in the early 20th century. The Croque Monsieur is essentially a grilled ham and cheese sandwich. It typically consists of sliced ham, Gruyère or Emmental cheese, and sometimes béchamel sauce, all sandwiched between slices of bread. The sandwich is then buttered on the outside and toasted or grilled until the cheese is melted and the bread is crispy.

The Croque Madame is a variation of the Croque Monsieur with the addition of a fried or poached egg on top. This variation is said to have originated in Paris and is named “Madame” because the egg on top is reminiscent of a lady’s hat.

‘Croquer’ stands in English for ‘to crunch’.

While there is no specific individual credited with inventing these sandwiches, they are believed to have been popularized in French cafés and bistros in the early 1900s. The Croque Monsieur and Croque Madame have since become iconic French dishes enjoyed both in France and internationally.

The ones on the photo I ate somewhere at Mont Martre. However, it is not the only possible way to serve a croque. The only fixed thing is the base ingredients.

Croque Monsieur

Croque Madame

Cheese and ham sandwich, the French version