What do Panini, French croque monsieur and quesadillas all have in common? They’re ALL different types of grilled cheese! If you thought that grilled cheese sandwiches were only two slices of bread, think again! In today’s blog, I’m going to teach you to make these and other delicious international supermelts with my favorite tips and tricks for choosing ingredients and cooking techniques.
First things first – let’s start with bread.
- You can use any kind of bread. Multigrain, a sliced ciabatta, soft tortilla, whatever you prefer.
- Stale bread always works better than fresh because it’s drier and browns better. It also retains its shape without getting smooshed.
- Try not to pick bread with too many holes or else the cheese will seep through the holes while cooking. If a little bit of the cheese does peek through and melt around the edges of the sandwich and crisp up on the pan, don’t get rid of it—it’s absolutely delicious!
- Want some ideas? Try anything from Jarlsberg to Queso Blanco to Colby, Havarti, Muenster, and Cheddar to good old American cheese!
- Use about 2-3 ounces of cheese per sandwich.
- Always grate your cheese; it melts faster.
- Adding other ingredients will make your grilled cheese truly unique, so put your own personal spin on it with some fun flavors and ingredients!
- Try caramelized onions, sautéed mushrooms, bacon, ham, arugula, pesto, jalapenos, apples, jams like fig or sour cherry, mortadella, pepperoni, corned beef, veggies like spinach or kale, olive tapenade, grilled thin sliced zucchini, or a balsamic reduction.
- Don’t overcrowd your pan. I also like to put a lid on it to help with the melting process.
- Cooking for a crowd? Keep the oven on 200F and put your cooked sandwiches in the oven to keep them warm while you finish making the rest.
- Grilled cheese is great for any meal! Make a bacon or ham & egg grilled cheese for breakfast or a cream cheese, Gouda and mixed berry grilled cheese sandwich for dessert? Doesn’t that sound sweet?
Did you know April is Grilled Cheese Month? What’s your favorite grilled cheese combination? Let me know, drop me a line at ChefJacquie@taste4travel.net