Monday, October 24, 2011
For probably about two years now, my husband has been begging me to make him a Monte Cristo. The main reason it took me so long to make one was because I had no clue what it was. He tried to explain it to me and I guess I could have looked it up, but I just never got around to it. That was until I started working at the coffee shop and needed to come up with new sandwich ideas. So, I decided it was a good time to figure out what this Monte Cristo sandwich was all about.
Basically, a Monte Cristo is a sandwich you dip in french toast batter and fry. It's actually a whole lot simpler to make than I thought it would be. I found a recipe on allrecipes.com called Monte Cristo Sandwich - The Real One.
- Heat 5 inches of oil in a deep-fryer to 365 degrees F (180 degrees C). While oil is heating, make the batter: In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg and water. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and pepper; whisk into the egg mixture until smooth. Set aside in the refrigerator.
- Assemble sandwiches by placing one slice of turkey on one slice of bread, a slice of ham on another, then sandwich them with the Swiss cheese in the middle. Cut sandwiches into quarters, and secure with toothpicks.
- Dip each sandwich quarter in the batter so that all sides are coated. Deep fry in the hot oil until golden brown on all sides. Remove toothpicks and arrange on a serving tray. Dust with confectioners' sugar just before serving.
After reading the reviews of this recipe, I decided I didn't need a quart of oil. I poured about 1/4" of oil in a skillet and waited until I had assembled the sandwiches to start heating it up.
First, I made the batter. I mixed the flour, baking powder, salt and pepper in a small bowl and then used a whisk to mix it into the egg and water. The flour I used is the new Gold Medal White Whole Wheat Flour which actually gave this really good flavor.
Next I assembled the sandwiches. Instead of following the directions, it's easier to just place the turkey on one piece of bread, then the swiss cheese, then the ham and top it with the other slice of bread. You can see by the picture, I tried it by the directions first and it works, but it's just easier to do it the other way!
I cut the sandwiches into quarters and stuck toothpicks into them to hold them together. The first sandwich I stuck the toothpicks vertically, but decided that wasn't going to work, so I ended up sticking them in kind of diagonally. While I was doing all of this I turned my burner on medium high to let the oil start heating up in the skillet.
Now for the fun part! I dunked each little sandwich in the batter and put it in the skillet. I coated the sides as well as the top and bottom on the first couple of sandwiches. They quickly got soggy and were hard to handle so the rest of them I just coated the top and bottom which worked out because as the sandwiches cooked, the batter dripped down the sides a little.
After they browned on one side, I flipped them over and let them brown on the other side.
Once they were browned, I put the on a rack to drain and then dusted the tops with powdered sugar.
I put a couple on a plate and gave it to my husband to try. Oh yeah, I pulled the toothpicks out of the first couple of sandwiches and then just warned him that they were in there on the second round! He said he would have given this a four helping rating if he could have eaten that much!
Some suggestions say to eat these with currant jelly. We ate them with strawberry jam and the leftovers with syrup. I made a similar version of these for the coffee shop and called it a Cafe' Monte Cristo. I made the sandwiches using french toast, grilled them and dusted them with powdered sugar. They were a hit!