Nothing is more hearty and comforting than soup and grilled cheese when the chill of Fall blows in. It makes for a tasty and quick lunch or dinner (or supper, depending on where you're from, I suppose). Gone are the days of canned tomato soup laden with sodium and neon orange waxy slices of something akin to cheese. My childhood friend's mom used to make us grilled cheese on smushy white bread with "cheese product" cut from an industrial size orange brick. I believe she even cooked it in margarine. I shudder at the thought.
I've given grilled cheese a much needed makeover. In fact, some of these concoctions are so good that they're even company worthy. And as far as my soup of choice, tomato. But this time it's homemade or organic. And nothing but real butter to cook the grilled cheese!
- Add thin pear slices and a few crumbles of bleu cheese to monterey jack on Italian white bread.
- Layer gouda, thin apple slices, and thick cut bacon on whole wheat bread.
- Spread dijon mustard on sliced French bread, top with brie, ham, arugula.
- Top pepper jack cheese with sliced red onion and fresh jalapenos on whole grain bread.
- Rub garlic on crusty white bread, top with swiss cheese, tomato slices, and gruyere.
Chances are, if you come to my house for dinner on a cold evening, we'll sip red wine in the kitchen while I make grilled cheese sandwiches to order.
Ilina uses her sons as test objects for all her cooking adventures. She blogs at Dirt & Noise where she features 5:00 Fridays, a weekly cocktail recipe and the story that inspired it. You can follow her on Twitter at @IlinaP.