Mini hot cheesy sandwiches are never ever a bad idea. Even if you have all kinds of fancy appetizers at a party, these will be the snacks everyone is reaching for. This is not an austere food, but each little 2-bite sandwich is meant to make you feel weepy with joy.
There are two ways to make these. One is to just grill up the sandwiches in the pan, cut them into squares and watch happiness ensue.
If you have extra time and feel like going one step further, you will find that you’ll have a bit of leftover cheese sauce (béchamel sauce), and if you spread this over the tops of the grilled cheese sandwiches and give them a quick run under the broiler you’ll have another level of cheesy nirvana.
Just preheat the broiler after you toasted the slices of bread. After you’ve grilled the sandwiches on the stove, place them on a baking sheet (lined with aluminum foil or parchment paper). Spread the tops of the sandwiches with the remaining sauce, dividing it and spreading it evenly. Broil the sandwiches for just 1 minute or so, until the top is turning brown in spots. Remove from the oven, transfer to a cutting board, and let sit for a minute before cutting into quarters. Serve right away.
The star of this show is Roth Grand Cru one of the pillars of the amazing Roth line of cheeses, all made out of Wisconsin. This is an alpine style cheese, similar to Gruyere, and it is the perfect anchor for the béchamel sauce, and also the perfect nutty, deep melting cheese for these super sophisticated mini grilled cheese sandwiches.
You could use another type of ham in place of the prosciutto, but few foods are as luxe as prosciutto, and they do pop up the level of these croques.
These would be a perfect New Year’s Eve bite to keep everyone sated while waiting for dinner, or for the ball to drop. And after the New Year has come and gone, make these sandwiches (but let everyone have a full one!) during those cold Winter days when a great grilled cheese sandwich is all you want for lunch.
You’ll want a salad to go with – try this fennel and endive salad, this kamut tabbouleh salad or this Brussels sprouts, apple, and pomegranate slaw salad.
Mini Croque Monsieurs with Prosciutto
- 12 slices good, firm-crumbed white bread about 1/2 inch thick
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter divided, softened
- ¼ cup all purpose flour
- 1 ½ cups whole milk
- 2 cups shredded Roth Grand Cru divided
- Kosher salt and finely ground pepper to taste
- 24 thin slices prosciutto
- Preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly toast the bread, for just 2 or 3 minutes, until slightly firm. Spread the one side of each of the pieces of toast with the softened butter, using about 3 tablespoons of the butter.
- In a medium saucepan, melt the remaining 3 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour until incorporated and just turning dark blond, about 1 minute, then slowly add the milk, whisking constantly. Stir in 1/2 cup of the Grand Cru, and season and with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat and cool slightly.
- Spread a generous 2 tablespoons of sauce on 1 slice of the bread, on the non-buttered side. Top with 2 slices prosciutto, draping them to cover the surface, and sprinkle that with 1/4 cup of the remaining shredded Grand Cru. Top with another slice of bread, buttered side up. Repeat to make 6 sandwiches in total. Cut the crusts off the edges of the bread (or don’t, but it adds a nice little polish).
- Heat a large skillet with a lid over medium heat. Place 2 or 3 sandwiches, however many will fit, in the skillet and cook for 3 minutes, covered, until the bottom is golden brown. Uncover the pan, flip the sandwich and cook for 2 more minutes, covered, until the shredded cheese is melted, and the sandwich is golden brown on both sides. Remove to a cutting board and set sit for 1 minute before cutting into fourths (or see Note). Meanwhile, start the next batch of sandwiches.
- Serve the mini Croque Monsieurs hot.
NoteYou will have some leftover cheese sauce (béchamel) after assembling the sandwiches. If you want to make them even more cheesily spectacular, preheat the broiler after you toasted the slices of bread. After you’ve grilled the sandwiches on the stove, place them on a baking sheet (lined with aluminum foil or parchment paper). Spread the tops of the sandwiches with the remaining sauce, dividing it and spreading it evenly. Broil the sandwiches for just 1 minute or so, until the top is turning brown in spots. Remove from the oven, transfer to a cutting board, and let sit for a minute before cutting into quarters. Serve right away. This post has been sponsored by Roth cheese. All the opinions expressed are my very own.
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