This ultimate Monte Cristo is like your favorite grilled cheese sandwich tucked inside the middle of Sunday French toast, with the perfect crispy coating of whole grains and toasted pecans! Just slap a few slices of turkey (or ham), Gruyere cheese, and a splash of Dijon on your favorite bread, then dip it in eggs and coat it with toasted pecans and whole-grain cereal. Grill it on the stove for a perfectly delicious sandwich -crunchy on the edges and blissfully fluffy and soft inside! It’s easy to make and looks fancy, all at the same time!
The Monte Cristo sandwich is thought to be named as a tribute to the French novel The Count of Monte Cristo, by Alexandre Dumas. It also has many similar ingredients to the Croque Monsieur sandwich, which is a grilled sandwich made with Gruyere and ham, and sometimes a sauce, or an egg, in which case it is called a Croque Madame. The main difference is that the Monte Cristo is dipped in egg and then cooked, so it comes out like French toast on the outside.
Many people serve their Monte Cristo sandwiches with powdered sugar and jam, but we like to keep this sandwich totally on the savory side by seasoning it with lemon pepper, salt, and pepper. We used pulverized whole-grain bran cereal along with chopped toasted pecans for the crispy coating. Traditionally, Monte Cristo sandwiches are made with ham and Swiss cheese, but we also like thinly sliced turkey or even a combination of the two, and we take the Swiss cheese up a step and use Gruyere. It is one of our very favorite cheeses!
We love to get good fiber into our diets by using whole-grain cereals in places where you might find bread crumbs or frying batter. We love the crunch and the flavor it gives to savory dishes, in addition to bakery goods like muffins!
Monte Cristo with a Crunch
- Food processor
- Frying pan or griddle
- 8 slices bread (white or whole wheat)
- 1 1/2 cups grated Gruyere cheese
- 16 pieces thinly sliced turkey
- 4 tbsp. Dijon mustard
- 1 whole egg
- 2 egg whites
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 tsp. lemon pepper
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. pepper
- 1 cup Fiber One Cereal or your favorite whole grain cereal
- 1 cup toasted pecans
- 3 tbsp. olive oil or safflower oil
- Place pecans and Fiber One cereal in the bowl of your food processor and process until small bits, about the consistency of large bread crumbs. Dump this mixture out onto a flat dinner plate. Set aside.
- Whisk together egg, egg whites, milk, lemon pepper, salt and pepper in a medium sized bowl. You can pour it into a square flat casserole dish for dipping the sandwich into. Set aside.
- Lay all eight pieces of bread out onto a large cutting board. Spread one side with Dijon mustard (or both sides if you really love mustard:) Sprinkle grated cheese evenly over four pieces of bread. Layer four slices of sliced turkey (or ham) over the cheese. Close the sandwiches by putting the bare slices on top of the turkey.
- Dip the sandwiches into the egg mixture and be sure to dip both sides.
- Now lay the sandwiches on top of the crunchy pecan-cereal on teh plate and coat both sides with teh mixture.
- Drizzle olive oil into your skillet or griddle and heat the pan over medium heat. Lay the sandwiches (two at a time if you are using a pan, or all together on the griddle). Cook over medium heat, until the bottoms are nice and browned. Flip and continue to cook to brown the other side. Turn heat down and continue to cook until the cheese is melted. Remove from heat to a cutting board.
- Cut sandwiches in half and serve with extra Dijon mustard!