For the past several weeks I have been working nights. As you can imagine my body-clock is completely out of whack. I don’t mind the grave-yard shift but what does bother me is missing breakfast. By the time I get home all I want to do is crawl into bed and sleep. I’m usually so tired that even the sound of my rumbling stomach isn’t enough to wake me!

When I get up my appetite is gone and a quick sandwich or small bowl of soup will see me through  until my 2am break. Ugh…fortunately this is only temporary! In any case today I had the luxury of NOT having to go into work and I was able to enjoy my most favourite meal of the day. I decided to treat myself to a Croque Madam. This is a fantastic recipe by Rachel Khoo and one that is sure to impress. I usually save it for lazy Sunday brunches or special occasions and a day (or should I say night) off is a pretty special occasion for me at the moment.

Ingredients

2-3 pieces of bread per muffin

1 egg per muffin

Some melted butter (you can use margarine if you wish) for muffin tin or souffle dish

Sauce:

1 Tablespoon butter (or margarine)

1 Tablespoon flour

10ml milk

1/2 teaspoon mustard (Dijon works nicely)

Pinch of nutmeg

Salt and Pepper

Fresh Herbs optional but tasty (I used parsley, garlic chives and oregano)

Approximately 200g of grated cheese such as Gruyere (a good, strong cheese works best)

Sliced ham, turkey, salami or bacon (I used smoked streaky bacon – I was also going to add some fresh spinach but I forgot!)

Directions

Cook your protein if you need to, slice it and then set aside

Cut the crusts off the bread (I gave mine to the birds) and flatten the slices with a rolling pin

Brush each slice with melted butter (This will help them turn crisp rather than soggy in the oven)

Grease your muffin tin or souffle dishes with melted butter and press the buttered slices of bread into them

The edges of the bread are supposed to come over the top of the tin / dish

Add approximately 1-2 Tablespoons of bacon, turkey, salami, ham (spinach if you remember!) to each tin / dish

The Sauce:

Melt butter for the sauce

Add the flour and mix to form a paste

Add the milk and remove from heat once it starts to thicken

Add almost all of the cheese but keep a little back to sprinkle on top

Add nutmeg, mustard, salt, pepper and chopped, fresh herbs

Crack an egg into every tin / dish

Spoon approximately 1-2 Tablespoons of sauce into each tin / dish

Sprinkle cheese over each one

Bake in the oven at 180°C / 160°C Fan Assisted / 350°F / Gas Mark 4 for 12 minutes for runny eggs or 17-20 minutes if you prefer firmer eggs

They should pop out of the tins / dishes with ease but if not, use a knife to carefully loosen the places where the bread appears to be sticking

Enjoy!

Off with the crusts

Flatten each slice

Brush each slice and your souffle dish / muffin tin with melted butter

 

Prepare your protein (these can be veggie too – just add some spinach, tomatoes, beans etc)

 

Press the buttered bread into the tin / dish

Add the chopped bacon etc…

 

Make the sauce

 

Once you’ve added the egg spoon in some sauce and sprinkle with additional cheese

 

Tuck in!

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