Monte Cristo Sammies

Colie and Amanda came over for dinner a while ago and I wanted to make something fun and festive for the occasion. We get together every Thursday for Top Chef and Grey’s viewing nights – always at my house, but the cooking rotates. I found this amazing Raspberry ham and havarti cheese on sale at GB Russo’s that week, so I knew I wanted to make a sandwich. I thought about just a panini, but then it came to me, like a thief in the night – monte cristos. I had only ever made them once before, using a Rachel Ray recipe for southwestern monte cristos and black bean soup. I thought her style was great – instead of battering and deep frying, you batter it and slap it on the griddle just like french toast. Better for you and WAY easier to boot.

Since I already had the ham and havarti, I started thinking about what else would go well with those flavors. I had leftover chicken breasts and fontina cheese, so we used that, along with blackberry jam. I served honey and dijon mustard for dipping, and made them on homemade challah bread.

Except, I left Amanda to slice the bread. And if I am the world biggest overmaker, girlfriend is right there in the sisterhood with me. Because instead of slicing the bread normal way, she sliced from the top down – and turned a two pound loaf of bread into 6 equal slices – exactly enough for three sammies. You can imagine then, how big and thick these slices were. INSANE. And delicious. We only ate half, but it was so amazing heated up for lunch the next day. I served this with some delicious roasted asparagus.

You’ll need:

  • 1 pound of meat, 2 varieties (Use what you love – I normally hate ham, and loved this raspberry ham, so use what sounds good.)
  • 3/4 pound cheese, mixed kinds (Again, whatever sounds nice.)
  • 6 T fruit jam
  • 1 loaf bread, sliced (Challah worked great here, but so would any other kind of yummy bread.)
  • Mustard
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • Cooking spray

Get cooking:

  1. Heat a skillet to medium high heat and coat with non stick cooking spray.
  2. Beat these eggs into the milk – this will be the batter for your bread.
  3. Assemble the sammies as you normally would.
  4. Dip each side into the batter, being careful to keep the sandwich together (this gets easier with practice).
  5. Put into skillet and cook just like french toast – wait for the sides to get brown and then flip. You may need to cover for the cheese to melt, depending on how thick the bread is sliced.
  6. Cut in half and serve!
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