The Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich

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Published on: September 8, 2016
 

Grilled cheese, cheese toastie, toasted cheese sandwich, how ever you refer to it – this simple and tasty meal is easy to make.  To make our ultimate grilled cheese sandwich we need the right ingredients, while this may be subjective to some, everyone knows that Gruyere is the ultimate melting cheese and that Red Leicester is better than Cheddar.  All we need is a third cheese to add a bit more flavour and my personal choice is Jarlsberg for it’s sweet nutty flavour and excellent melting qualities.  You could use Gouda or Leerdammer cheese but Jarlsberg combines perfectly with Gruyere and Red Leicester; therefore all other choices would be inferior.  A fourth cheese would be greedy and so three is all that is needed or allowed.    The other essential ingredient in a grilled cheese sandwich is bread and only Sourdough will do.  As the title of this recipe is “The Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich” and not the “mediocre” or “decent” grilled cheese sandwich talk of supermarket sliced bread is strictly forbidden.  Foolish people like Jamie Oliver will claim a white bloomer is the best choice, but what would he know?  No only Sourdough provides the chewy yet crisp toasted bread, while it also adds an interesting sour flavour (although that depends on the culture used to make your sourdough).

Finally we need to properly prepare the bread.  Don’t cut the bread too thick, it won’t toast properly, an inch thick or so and no more.  In order to get the perfect, even toasting of the bread in the pan it needs to be lighly buttered on one side.  Oil doesn’t produce the same final product, so if you’re trying to stick to a diet (what are you doing looking at a grilled cheese sandwich recipe?) you’re not going to find much help here.  It’s very important that your butter is unsalted, the cheeses will have plenty of salt, the bread won’t need it, so adding more through the butter will ruin things.  I prefer a frying pan to a grill pan, as the grill pan will put charred grill lines into the bread and we don’t need that flavour, burnt bread isn’t very appealing.

I leave the precise quantities of cheese to you but I will say if you want more cheese it will need to be in slices, as you can only pile so much grated cheese before it starts to spill everywhere.  While grated cheese melts easier, the slices let you maximise the use of your bread and when properly spread out and torn where necessary it will melt just as well.

Grilled Cheese

Ingredients (Serves 1):

Red Leicester

Gruyere

Jarlsberg

Sourdough bread

25g unsalted butter

Method:

  1.  Thinly spread some of the butter on one side of the bread
  2.  Any excess butter goes in the frying pan at a medium-high heat
  3.  Arrange the cheese on the other, un-buttered side of the bread and make a sandwich
  4.  Reduce the heat to medium and place the cheese sandwich in the middle of the frying pan
  5.  Press the sandwich down with something flat like a plate or the bottom of another pan and cook for about 3 mins until the bread is golden
  6.  Flip the sandwich and cook for another 3 mins or until the cheese oozes out the sides and forms a nice cheese crust.
  7.  Serve immediately with a selection of condiments like Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, chili sauce or whatever else you like!

Oozing Grilled Cheese

Tips:

  • Adjust the heat as necessary, you don’t want the bread to toast too quickly before the cheese has time to melt but you also don’t want it so low that the bread doesn’t toast properly and goes soggy.
  • Move the sandwich around in the pan, this ensures that the cheese melts all through the sandwich – nobody likes to find unmelted cheese at one corner of their sandwich.  It will also spread the melted butter around evenly.
  • If you’re a veggie, check that the cheese is vegetarian although thatshould go without saying?.
  • If you can’t work out the quantities of cheese you will require (you have got bigger problems than I can solve) 100g of each is a good start.


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