Madame Freda | The Jewish Week | Food & Wine

Madame Freda

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Madame Freda

Oh, the pleasures of lingering over a croque madame in a Parisian cafe! This decadent sandwich is borrowed from the wonderful French version, and we’ve substituted our delicious—and addictive—duck bacon for the classic ham. This makes a great brunch dish and we recommend using high-quality cheese for the tastiest results. The béchamel should be made ahead of time so that it can chill for at least an hour.

Servings & Times
Yield:
  • 4 sandwiches
Ingredients

BÉCHAMEL

1⁄2 cup whole milk

1⁄2 cup heavy cream

Pinch of kosher salt

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons flour

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1⁄2 cup shredded white cheddar cheese


8 slices sourdough or country white bread

8 slices Gruyère or Swiss cheese

8 slices Duck Bacon, cooked

Butter, for toasting

1⁄2 cup white cheddar cheese

1⁄2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

4 eggs

Cracked black pepper

Steps

For the béchamel: Heat the milk, cream, and salt together in a microwave or in a saucepan on the stovetop until warm. Slowly melt the butter in a saucepan, and once melted, add the flour and stir until combined. Slowly whisk in the warm milk and cream and bring the béchamel to a simmer. Once thickened and bubbling, add the Worcestershire sauce and 1/2 cup of the cheddar cheese; stir to combine. Chill in the refrigerator.

To assemble the sandwiches: Preheat the broiler.

Spread a teaspoon or so of the béchamel on both sides of the bread slices. Place 2 slices of Gruyère and 2 slices of duck bacon on one side of the sandwich. Close the sandwich and do the same for the other three.

In a frying pan, using a small amount of butter, toast each side of the sandwich as you would a grilled cheese.

Mix together the cheddar and the Parmesan in a small bowl. Place the toasted sandwiches on a baking sheet and spread liberally with the béchamel covering the entire slice, doing the same with a handful of the shredded cheese. Place the baking sheet under your broiler and cook for 2 to 4 minutes, until the top of the sandwich is bubbling and the cheese becomes a golden brown.

In a small saute pan, cook each egg sunny-side up with a little butter; the yolks should stay runny. Place one egg on top of each sandwich. Serve with a dash of Worcestershire sauce and cracked black pepper.


From JACK’S WIFE FREDA: Cooking from New York’s West Village by Maya and Dean Jankelowitz. Recipes by Julia Jaksic. Published by Blue Rider Press, an imprint of Penguin Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. Copyright © 2016 by NoamBennyLLC