I met a woman a few weeks ago who said to me, “I don’t really care for cheese.” My head started to whirl. Had she said she didn’t like bread, I probably would have fainted.
Ah, grilled cheese sandwiches – it’s such a simple food. Dinner food. Lunch food. Kid food. It’s perfect served with a side of tomato soup on a winter’s day. And it’s never disappointing.
Perhaps the best feature is its versatility. There is absolutely nothing wrong with the classic cheddar cheese on white bread, but let’s think outside the box for a moment. Just by varying the type of cheese, bread, or adding an additional ingredient like fruit, let’s say, your options are practically limitless.
Here’s one of my favorites. The Fontina lends a sort of nutty flavor, while the grapes add sweetness. And the ciabatta bread’s nooks and crannies are perfect pockets to hold all that melted cheese.
Grilled Fontina with Grapes on Ciabatta
Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 25 minutes
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 1/2 cup seedless red grapes, cut in half lengthwise
• 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary (or 3/4 teaspoon dried)
• salt and pepper to taste
• 4 Ciabatta rolls
• 8 ounces Fontina cheese, cut into 12 slices
Pull out some of the center of each piece of bread to create a pocket. Brush the outside of each piece with the olive oil. Place the 4 bottom pieces on your work surface, oiled side down. Distribute the cheese evenly over the 4 pieces, followed by the grapes and rosemary. Place the remaining 4 bread pieces on top, oiled side up.
Heat a skillet over medium-high. Put the sandwiches in the skillet, cover, and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the bread has turned a shade darker and the cheese has begun to melt. Uncover, and turn the sandwiches with a spatula, pressing very firmly to compress them. Cook for 2-3 minutes more, or until the undersides are golden brown.
Print this recipe (adapted from Great Grilled Cheese)