Ham, Egg, and Cheese Melt
An open-face ham and cheese sandwich topped by a fried egg makes a hearty breakfast or an excellent late-night snack. Tomato and lightly dressed arugula add brightness to complement all that gooey goodness.
4 3/4-inch-thick slices crusty country bread, preferably cut from the center of a round loaf
1/4 cup mayonnaise
12 very thin slices deli ham (about 6 oz.)
2 to 3 medium ripe tomatoes, sliced 1/2 inch thick
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 oz. extra-sharp Cheddar, coarsely grated (about 1-1/2 cups)
1 oz. (2 Tbs.) unsalted butter
4 large eggs
6 oz. baby arugula (about 6 cups)
2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1-1/2 Tbs. balsamic vinegar or lemon juice
Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 450°F.
Spread each slice of bread with about 1 Tbs. mayonnaise and put on a baking sheet. Top each piece with 3 slices of ham and 2 or 3 slices of tomato. Season with salt and pepper. Top with the cheese and bake until the cheese melts and the edges of the bread are light golden-brown, about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat until the foam subsides. Crack the eggs into the pan and fry them sunny side up until the whites are set but the yolks are still soft, about 2 minutes. Toss the arugula with the oil and vinegar and season to taste with salt and pepper. Top each sandwich with an egg, season with salt and pepper, and serve with the salad. ―Emily McKenna
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