There is nothing so simple, so magical, so soul-satisfying as a great grilled cheese sandwich. I like mine with sweet, sweet tomato and crusty bread grilled to golden toastiness in plenty of butter. Don’t melt the cheese too long..it needn’t turn to rubber.
It’s good kid food, but also good grown up food, especially with some serious cheese. The American stuff? It has its place, but, uh, not at my house. Most cheeses that make you happy will sing melodically melted between slices of your favorite bread. Hint: a grilled cheese is a wondrous midnight snack, and not bad for breakfast, either!
Fontina is the greatest of cheeses for melting, along with gruyere, comte and beaufort; runners-up are morbier and vacherin fribourgeois…all on Steve’s list of grilled cheese go-to’s. Just head to your Fairway cheese counter and go crazy. Make one of these grilled cheeses as soon as humanly possible. You won’t regret it.
The Famous Steve Jenkins’ Grilled Cheese Cheese Picks
1. Parmigiano-Reggiano toasts with butter or olive oil and grated parm; any kind of bread, open-faced.
2. Gruyere with salted butter, sliced tomato and black pepper on sourdough; closed-faced.
3. English cheddar with sweet butter and honeycup mustard (or any sweet/hot mustard) on whole-grain bread.
4. Fontina d’aosta with sweet butter on a fairway baguette (nothing else!).
5. Morbier with sweet butter and just a slick of your favorite preserves–perhaps beautiful Belberry Raspberry and Star Anise Delice– on baguette.
6. Gruyere, comte or beaufort with sweet butter and length-sliced scallion on pumpernickel or black bread.
7. Vacherin fribourgeois or appenzeller with sweet butter and sliced cornichons on rye bread.
The technique is oh so simple. Butter your bread generously–EVOO works too–, place a slice in a hot pan, sprinkle shredded cheese and whatever else your heart desires, top with another slice of buttered bread, and cook until gorgeous. The bread should be amber-gold and the cheese gooey and melty.
Dunk in tomato soup, or be a purist and eat as-is. Relish!