We will, we will CROQUE you!
[Wait, what do you mean that’s not in this show?!]
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This is our second School of Rock-themed recipes, following on from Stick It To The (Gingerbread) Man. You will, I am sure recall, that School Of Rock is the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical based on the Jack Black film of the same name, currently wowing audiences on Broadway and the West End.
What would Dewey Finn eat as a pre Battle Of The Bands snack… something fairly robust with pastrami and cheese perhaps? Something the size of those gigantic Scooby-Doo sandwiches? But what to call it… School of Croque, of course!
A Croque Monsieur is a quintessential French sandwich being essentially a Gruyere and ham grilled cheese sandwich topped with a Bechamel sauce – and, for the gender-bending Croque Madame, with an egg on top. Other variations exists, leading to a whole cast of Croque characters, but I decided that this was the moment to create my own version, School of Rock style. I’ve thrown caution to the wind and put the creamy sauce on the inside, the cheese on the outside and changed the meat – the culinary equivalent of trashing the hotel room and throwing the TV out of the window and then ordering everything on the room service menu.
This is technically a Pastrami-Club-Rarebit-Madame, but whose dish is this anyway?!
Mix the cream cheese with the mustard and chopped capers. Unless you’re particularly organised, you may like poach your eggs in advance and refresh immediately in a bowl of iced water.
In a small pan, mix the mustard powder and cider over a low heat. Stir in the grated cheese and keep stirring as it melts – do not let it boil. Once smooth, bring it off the heat and allow to cool slightly before beating in the egg yolk.
Toast the bread slices and butter (if using all 3 slices, club-sandwich style, butter both sides of the middle slice).
Spread a layer of the cream cheese mix on the bottom slice of bread. Top with half the pastrami and cornichons. Repeat with the next slice of bread. Stack your layers up and top with the final bread slice, placing the sandwich in a (preferably lined) baking tray.
Smother the sandwich with the cheese mix and place under a hot grill (or face-melting guitar solo) until bubbling and caramelised. Meanwhile, poach your eggs (or re-heat in hot water if prepared in advance)
If you’re sharing (!) divide in two across the diagonal. Top with a poached egg and tuck in!