‘Croque Madame – Breakfast treat

Croque Madame breakfast

Still wondering what the big difference is between a croque madame and a
croque monsieur? An egg. And the egg is placed on top of the croque
madame – not the monsieur. And I'm certain this is because women have
that extra 'thing'.

I was quite surprised by this bit of information mentioned above. In my
mind, a so-called monsieur’s breakfast is usually bigger than a
so-called madame’s breakfast, not the other way around. Come to think of
it, I actually love the fact that the madame get to have the bigger
meal. Anything is better topped with a poached egg, especially if it’s
all golden and gooey.

Next to the classic eggs benedict, this is my second favourite breakfast
in the world. It’s probably because I’m a sauce person. And I love rich
breakfasts with butter, cheese and runny poached eggs. Top it off with
really great toast, like the sourdough from Schoon de Compagne, and I’m
a happy camper.


Gruyere sauce for croque madame

Ingredients for the Gruyere sauce: (serves 2)

  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) butter
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) cake flour
  • 1/2 cup full cream milk
  • 2 teaspoons (10ml) Dijon mustard
  • about 1/2 cup grated Gruyere cheese
  • salt & pepper


In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and add the flour.
Stir well to form a smooth paste and cook for about 2 minutes. Then add
the milk and stir to form a smooth, thick sauce. Turn down the heat to
very low, then add the mustard, cheese and seasoning. Remove from the
heat and set aside.

Croque Madame breakfast

Ingredients for the croque madame: (serves 2)

  • 4 slices of sourdough bread, toasted
  • 4 slices of best quality smoked ham (I used hickory ham)
  • 2-4 eggs, poached in water for 3-4 minutes


Place the slices of toast on a baking tray. Top with slices of ham and
Gruyere sauce, then place under a hot grill to turn golden brown (watch
carefully, it only takes a minute). Remove from the oven, then top with
a freshly poached egg. Serve immediately.



This post was originally written for The Pretty Blog by Ilse van der Merwe from The Food Fox.
Assistant: Elsebé Cronje

Photography: Tasha Seccombe'