A Monte Cristo conjures up special memories of my childhood, it’s a sandwich that my dad would often make me by special request or I would order on the rare occasion we dined out. It was a far cry from my daily PB&J at the time. A traditional Monte Cristo features ham and melted cheese between bread that had been soaked in an egg-milk mixture and fried in the style of French toast (another of Dad’s specialties). Oh, and a topping of raspberry jam as a sticky-sweet finishing touch!
My version of this sandwich is even bolder and better! Imagine juicy roast beef sandwiched between a smear of blue cheese dressing AND blue cheese on one side and fresh, halved cherries AND cherry preserves on the other!
The deep sweetness of cherries paired with the distinctive edge of blue cheese is indescribably fantastic! I’ve long been a fan of either of these ingredients paired with a steak, so I figured both would bring double the delish! When cherry season has come and gone, I’ll try making this sandwich with pomegranate arils.
After assembling the sandwiches, each side is set in an egg-milk bath and the bread soaks the mixture up like a sponge. After a quick pan fry in a bit of butter, this “haute” hot sandwich is ready to be dressed as you like – add a drizzle of cherry preserves, more blue cheese dressing, more blue cheese crumble (I can never get my fill!), or even a little lettuce for an affirmation of green!
This is a great dish to get on the table during the busy back-to-school season, the kids will gobble it up and you’ll appreciate how quick it is to make on the stove-top. Also, August is National Sandwich Month, so what are you waiting for?!