A Sandwich A Day: The Croque Monsieur à Cheval from Chez Lucienne

A Sandwich a Day

A new sandwich every day.

In this great city of ours, one could eat a different sandwich every day of the year—so that's what we'll do. Here's A Sandwich a Day, our daily look at sandwiches around New York. Got a sandwich we should check out? Let us know.—The Mgmt.

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[Photographs: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt]

I find it very difficult to turn down a good croque monsieur. And when I say good, I mean the kind that's made with high quality, smoky, generously sliced cooked ham sandwiched in between crusty bread with a big handful of grated gruyère cheese, griddled in butter until melty and crisp, then topped with a mornay sauce—flavored with more gruyère, of course—and broiled until brown and bubbly. It's like a cross between a ham sandwich, a grilled cheese, and a Welsh rarebit all rolled into one. If any one of those elements were missing, I wouldn't even eat it if it were the only thing left in the dining car on a cross-country on the TGV.

I also find it very difficult to turn down good fried eggs. And when I say good, I mean bright-yolked and runny with whites that quiver around the center but transition slowly towards the edges into gloriously crispy browned bits. Forgot slow-cooked and tender; I like my fried eggs crisp and brown with plenty of salt and butter.

Finally, I find it very difficult to turn down good fries. And when I say good, I mean above all crisp, grease-free, 1/4-inch thick matchsticks, their surfaces covered in fine salt, their interiors fluffy and potatoe-y. The way you wish every McDonald's french fry would be.

Chez Lucienne, a mere stone's throw away from my apartment in Harlem has all three things, and what's more, puts 'em all together on a single plate. Their Croque Monsieur à Cheval ($10.95) is a brunch I find particularly difficult to turn down.

Chez Lucienne

308 Lenox Avenue, New York NY 10027 (map) 212-289-5555
chezlucienne.com