Monte Cristo Sandwich is Pinch of Nom’s lower-calorie take on the French classic, croque monsieur. Or, in my attempt, a crap cheese and ham toastie with a few extra ingredients. I like the fact that sandwiches don’t have to be off limits when you’re on a ‘diet’, but I don’t like the potential food wastage making this involves – 3 spinach leaves, 1 cherry tomato, ½ a spring onion. It was enough to get my knickers in a twist wondering about what to do with the leftovers!
I don’t think it helped that I burnt it and singed my hand when trying to flip the sandwich over, but then again I am clumsy personified at times in the kitchen. Pinch of Nom suggest having this for breakfast, I think it’s better suited to brunch or lunch.
Recipe: Monte Cristo Sandwich
Calories: 379 per serving
Book: Pinch of Nom
Prep time: Approx 10 mins
Cooking time: Approx 5 mins
- 2 slices of wholemeal bread
- 20g reduced-fat Cheddar
- 2 slices of lean ham (about 50g)
- ½ spring onion (trimmed and thinly sliced)
- 1 cherry tomato (thinly sliced)
- 3 spinach leaves (roughly chopped)
- 1 small egg
- 1 tsp fat-free natural yoghurt
- ½ tsp Worcestershire sauce or Henderson’s relish
- ¼ tsp mustard powder
- Sea salt
- Ground black pepper
- Low-calorie cooking spray
Cost per portion: Approx £1.66
Cut the crusts off the slices of bread. Grate the cheese with a fine grater and sprinkle half of it onto one slice of the bread. Layer the ham, spring onion, tomato slices and spinach on top. Sprinkle over the other half of the cheese and place the second piece of bread on top. Press down on the sandwich to flatten it.
In a shallow bowl, beat the egg with the natural yoghurt and Worcestershire sauce. Season the egg with mustard powder, salt and pepper. Dip the sandwich in the egg, turning it over to make sure both sides of the bread have been soaked well.
Liberally spray a non-stick frying pan with low-calorie cooking spray and turn the heat up to medium. When the pan is hot and the cooking spray is bubbling, place the sandwich in the pan.
Cook for 1-2 minutes. Spray the top side of the sandwich with low-calorie cooking spray before flipping it over, then cook for another 1-2 minutes. The sandwich is ready when it looks golden and toasted, and the cheese has melted.
Slice the sandwich in half with a sharp knife and serve hot.