The ironic thing about my last post (get it? IRON-ic??) was that the majority of you seemed to just breeze right past my laudable domestic accomplishment, and instead focus solely on the photo of the delicious grilled cheese sandwich.
I can’t say I blame you.
In fact, I was actually pumped you guys asked, since this particular sandwich involved serious time, effort, and months (yes MONTHS) of planning.
Let me start by saying that those of you who found my last post “too domestic” might want to turn back now. Also, this is not your typical, Kraft Singles noise, so you grilled cheese purists also might want to sit this one out.
But if you’ve got an adventurous palate and like eating delicious things, then read on to see how it’s done.
And when it’s finished, I PROMISE you will say:
1. The Bread
We used a nice sourdough from BlackBird Baking Co. in Kensington Market here in Toronto:
but you can really use any artisinal or store-bought variety you want, provided that:
- it’s not too holey (you don’t want to lose any of that sweet, cheesy nectar); and
- you don’t slice it too thick (otherwise the cheese won’t melt. Duh)
2. The Cheese
There are times in life when one should exercise restraint. THIS IS NOT ONE OF THEM. Feel free to pile on as much cheese as humanly possible. We used a combination of old cheddar, and habanero havarti.
I briefly considered adding a third cheese, but then I thought
Each cheese needs its moment in the sun. (And by that I mean, in my mouth)
3. The Bacon
Oh yah. I went there.
We fried up some applewood smoked bacon for a little extra flavour and it was DELICIOUS.
4. The Tomatoes
In a rather unconventional move, we added roasted tomatoes to the mix.
We made these guys a while back using a recipe similar to this one, using beefeater tomatoes from the farmer’s market. After roasting them for 5(!!) hours, were planning to preserve them in olive oil, until we heard that can cause botulism
so we froze them instead.
If this roasting tomato business seems way more effort than it’s worth (trust me, I had that thought too) then you could always use store-bought sun-dried tomatoes instead.
5. The Spread
We used fresh pesto from Saint Lawrence Market, but again, you could also use store-bought. I honestly never met a pesto I didn’t like.
6. The Assembly
Heat up a heavy pan (we used a cast iron skillet) with a bit of oil. When that’s ready, take the bottom slice of each sandwich, and spread generously with butter (if you’ve made it this far, you’ve given up on being heart-healthy long ago). Set the bread butter-side down on the pan until it is evenly browned.
Make sure you watch carefully. We had a few casualties on this step.
Next, load up the cheese tomatoes, and bacon. We took another unconventional step here and broiled cheesy bread in the toaster oven for a few minutes.
One the cheese begins to melt, remove from toaster oven.
Then, take the top slices of bread, and spread generously with butter on one side, and pesto on the other. Place butter-side down on the pan.
Once browned, flip over and place pesto-side down on top the sandwich.
Press down gently, and behold the delicious ooey gooey goodness.
If you really wanted to, you could probably do another flip of the whole sandwich on the pan- but ours were melty and delicious enough already.
So There you have it- a deconstructed, pesto and roasted tomato grilled-cheese on artisinal sourdough.
Can you tell I’ve been watching too much Food Network lately?
We paired ours with tomato basil soup (I can’t remember the brand but we bought it at Loblaws) and some pickles and olives on the side. Perfection.
Now, for once on my blog I can finally say- you guys should ABSOLUTELY try this one at home. And make one for me too while you’re at it.