When life gets complicated, I think we all have the tendency to go back to the foods of our childhood: simple, easy, indulgent—in a word, comforting. We all have a favourite dish that takes us back, at least for a few minutes, to a more carefree time.
As a kid, I subsisted for one entire summer on ham and cheese sandwiches. I also loved french toast. Still do. So this is my idea of the ultimate sandwich: sweet ham and cheddar cheese, melting together between two slabs of hot, buttered, golden french toast. To me, it’s the culinary equivalent of a warm, friendly hug. And who can’t use a hug every now and then?
MONTE CRISTO SANDWICH
4 pieces french toast (you can buy them frozen, or make your own)
2 slices cooked ham
2 slices cheddar, mozzarella, or your choice of melty cheese
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons butter
Preheat your toaster oven to 350.
To assemble one sandwich, spread the inside of one piece of french toast with 1 tablespoon of mustard and the other piece with 1 tablespoon mayo. Add a slice of ham and a slice of cheese and put the two sandwich halves together. Spread each side with half a tablespoon of butter.
Heat a cast-iron pan and fry the sandwich for about 30 seconds on each side, just to melt the butter and get both sides evenly golden-brown.
Transfer to the heated toaster oven and bake for about 10 minutes, or until the cheese has melted.
Serve with a knife and fork.