Many people are familiar with Alexander Dumas' 1844 novel "The Count of Monte Cristo," but did the sandwich derive its name from the literary work? Food historians think that the sandwich was named after the French sandwich, croque monsieur, which is basically a grilled cheese made similarly to today's Monte Cristo. Some versions of the story do say the sandwich's name was a tribute to Dumas' book. Regardless, we know this sandwich originated in France and was served in a Paris café around 1910. It hit the California coast sometime in the mid-1900s, and then made the menu in Disneyland. The rest, as they say, is history.
So, what exactly is a Monte Cristo? It combines elements of breakfast and lunch, so serving it for dinner might just make some odd sense. This sandwich starts with three fairly boring deli staples -- turkey, ham and Swiss cheese -- and combines them between some thick, crusty bread spread with a touch of mustard and mayonnaise. Then, the whole sandwich is dipped in an egg mixture, much like French toast, and fried, giving it a tasty combination of salty and sweet. It's common to serve this sandwich with a side dish of jelly or even sprinkled with powdered sugar.
Like the novel which shares the same name, the Monte Cristo is a classic and this stacker is definitely dinner-worthy.