Monte Cristo with Orange and Rosemary Maple Syrup

December  6, 2010
Photo by Rocky Luten
Author Notes

I posted a breakfast picture on FB the other day and a friend posted back how much she loved a Monte Cristo she had recently eaten. Well not one to let an idea go to waste here is my take on what is an awesome sandwich. What is great is 9 times out of 10 you will have some form of the ingredients. Originally a Monte Cristo was a ham and turkey with Swiss cheese on white bread that is made like French toast and deep fried then served with maple syrup. I did this one a little different because who wants to deep fry them. These also hold really well in the oven while you finish cooking the others on the stove top so you can make lots of them and everyone can eat at the same time. The syrup is all that and a bag of chips. I already see it topping some pork chops. - thirschfeld —thirschfeld

Test Kitchen Notes

These elegant sandwiches were a total hit at brunch. I thought the flipping and dipping would be complicated and messy, but it was a cinch! The sandwiches came together in a flash, and I kept the finished ones in a warm oven as recommended – I think it made them even more delicious and melty. The egg white and panko coating turned out beautifully and added an unexpected crunch. As thirshfeld says, the syrup is to die for. The rosemary in particular does a lot to bridge the sweet-savory gap. A note: I made a double recipe and hardly made a dent in the egg whites. You could probably just whip up one and save the rest for something else. —UhOhSarah

  • Makes 2
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1/8 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh rosemary, very finely minced
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • 4 slices of brioche
  • 6 thin slices of ham, turkey or both, cut to fit the bread
  • 3/4 cup gruyere cheese, grated
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 3 tablespoons half and half
  • 2 egg whites, whipped until stiff
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
In This Recipe
  1. In a small sauce pan combine the orange juice, zest, rosemary, maple syrup and pepper. Bring to a boil and remove from the heat.
  2. Make two ham and cheese sandwiches with the bread, cheese and ham.
  3. Combine the cream and the egg yolks in a flat container and whisk them together. Place the panko crumbs on a plate.
  4. Dip one side of each sandwich into the egg yolk mixture and let it soak up some of the liquid. Flip the sandwich to soak the other side.
  5. While it is soaking spread an even layer of the egg white across the top of the sandwiches and sprinkle with panko.
  6. Turn the sandwiches out onto the panko, panko side down. Coat the uncoated side of the sandwich with egg white and then flip it again.
  7. Place a nonstick skillet over medium heat and melt the butter in the pan. When it is bubbling add the sandwiches. Brown slowly so the interior gets warm and melty. Flip and brown the other side. Cut the sandwiches in half and plate them. Serve with hot syrup on the side.
  8. As you can see it would be easy to make these in larger quantities. Heat the oven to 250 and brown them a little faster, put them on a sheet tray and let the oven finish cooking them while you are onto making other sandwiches.
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