MONTE CRISTO SANDWICH
The sandwich can differ regionally. Regional variations may include sliced turkey along with the ham and cheese. Traditionally, the sandwich is dipped in its entirety in egg batter and fried. In some regions of the United States it is served grilled, and in some regions it is served as an open sandwich with just the bread battered. It can also be served as an open sandwich using french toast as a base, with ham, turkey and Swiss cheese piled and then heated slightly under a broiler.
The sandwich is sometimes served with fresh fruit or with clotted cream on the side, sometimes with fruit preserves, powdered sugar, maple syrup, or sweet mustard sauce instead. Monte Cristos also may be served with a dusting of powdered sugar. In the North Country of New York State, Monte Cristo sandwiches are savory rather than sweet and served with Thousand Island dressing. This variation is often referred to as "Cumberland Head style."
OKAY PEOPLE. HOW on EARTH did I not know that this sandwich exsisted??
I was at dinner with friends for a birthday celebration (holla bday girl Kristen!) and I saw this sandwhich on the menu. I casually asked my friends what it was. They all were flabbergasted that I had never tried it -knowing my love for sweet and savory mix. I was then schooled that this creation had been around since the turn of the century and I have just heard about this NOW!
So I ordered this sandwich, realizing I was taking a huge risk with such a different dish - but I had to do it. I really had no idea what I was in for...
Now this particular version was served with a fruit compote, which I didn't eat. I had at that point, had my heart set on JAM with it (Thanks Rick James) which I was told was the traditional way to eat it. I am glad I did - the jame was the perfect additon.
Let me try to channel Adam Richman from Man vs Food when I describe this sandwich.
It was the perfect mix of melted cheese and warm meat in a semi sweet fried egg batter. The bread wasnt soggy but done perfectly and the jam just adds enough sweet to balance it all out. Its SO SO rich but such an amazing combination of just the right flavors, it made me curse. Then I gave half to my 14 yr old daughter - and she curse. Rightfully so.
***** 5 stars - this sandwich rocked my world!!