Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Day 73

Croque Madame: Today's post is another one of those foods where the individual ingredients may not be new to me, but the combination/preparation is. I had lunch today at the Buckhead Diner (, which is one of the mainstays of the Buckhead Life Restaurant Group. I've lived here for awhile and never been, so when the GF asked me to meet her for lunch there, I obliged. The menu was pretty basic, but I spied something that I'd heard of for years but never tried: a croque madame. I knew it was some sort of sandwich of French origin, but that's about it. As my readers should know by now, I'll try anything once. so I ordered.
The menu described it as "black forest ham, gruyere, swiss on brioche with mornay sauce and fried egg." I once heard Anthony Bourdain describe himself as an "egg slut," and that description suits me as well. I love anything with fried egg as an ingredient, so I was eager to find out what this sandwich was all about. I also wasn't exactly sure what mornay was, but figured it was some sort of cream sauce. The server brought my dish, and I was shocked at the portion size - it didn't come with a side, and it sure didn't need one. The ham was stuffed in between the grilled brioche, and the whole thing was topped with the creamy mornay sauce and a fried egg. Wow.

I figured it was best to just start eating this thing before I did any calorie counting, so I went to work with my knife and fork. It was actually really tasty, and the saltiness of the ham/bread was a nice contrast to the richness of the mornay sauce. The real pleasure came from the fried egg, which was a little overdone for my taste but still good. The best bites combined all the ingredients in a glorious, runny mess. Yum.

I finished the whole thing, but it was a gutbomb in the most extreme sense. You'll definitely want to do a few extra minutes on the treadmill after tackling one of these, but it's worth it.

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