Croque Madame

Emily Farris
Emily Farris
August 26, 2021
A croque madame is just a croque monsieur — a really rich, hot ham-and-cheese sandwich — with an egg on top. And the secret is in the sauce: a béchamel base thickened with both Parmesan and Gruyère and seasoned with fresh thyme. Because this is French, there’s lots of butter, too. Croque Madame is traditionally made in a pan on the stove, but this version is made in the Anova Precision Oven. If you use two sheet pans at once, you can prepare up to four at a time. 
Prep Time
Cook Time
Croque Madame
5 (2)
2 Tbsp
unsalted butter, plus more for buttering bread
2 Tbsp
all-purpose flour
1 cup
whole milk
bay leaf
12 oz
grated Gruyère cheese
¼ cup
finely grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp
fresh thyme leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
8 slices
thick white bread
12 thin slices
4 large

1. Preheat Oven

Sous Vide Mode: Off
Steam: 50%
Temp: 415°F
Heat: Rear

2. Make Béchamel

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. When the butter is foamy, whisk in the flour. Cook, stirring continuously, until the mixture bubbles and begins to smell a little nutty, about 2 minutes. Whisk in the milk and bay leaf. Cook, stirring frequently, until thickened, about 6 minutes.
Make Béchamel

3. Add Cheese

Remove the pan from the heat, discard the bay leaf, then stir in 1/4 cup of the Gruyère, along with the Parmesan, thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and a few grinds of pepper. 
Add Cheese

4. Assemble Sandwiches

For each sandwich, butter one side of a slice of bread and and place it on a sheet pan, butter-side down. Sprinkle with a little Gruyère, then top with three slices of ham and a heaping tablespoon of the sauce. Top with a second slice of buttered bread, butter-side up. 
Assemble Sandwiches

5. Toast

Place in the sandwiches in the oven and toast for 5 minutes. Carefully remove from the oven.
Sous Vide Mode: Off
Steam: 50%
Temp: 415°F
Heat: Rear
00:05 Timer

6. Let Oven Adjust for Broiling

Sous Vide Mode: Off
Steam: 50%
Temp: 482°F
Heat: Rear

7. Flip and Top Sandwiches

Carefully flip the sandwiches and top each with 2 heaping tablespoons sauce. Add about 1/4 cup Gruyère to the top of each sandwich.
Flip and Top Sandwiches

8. Cook

Return the sheet pan to the oven. After 5 minutes, quickly and carefully remove the tray from the oven and use a spoon to form a reservoir in the top of each sandwich. Crack an egg into each well. (If the egg runs over the edge, call it a “waterfall egg” and pretend you did it on purpose.) Quickly and carefully return the pan to the fourth rack of the oven, and cook the sandwiches until the eggs are set and the sandwiches are browned, about 5 minutes.
Sous Vide Mode: Off
Steam: 50%
Temp: 482°F
Heat: Rear
00:11 Timer

9. Serve

Sprinkle with salt and pepper and enjoy immediately. 
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