Ultimate Comfort

The other day I wanted a grilled cheese sandwich. I was craving it and i couldn’t tell you why. I just wanted one, but not a crappy fake american cheese on white bread grilled cheese. I wanted something fancy.

So I created grown-up grilled cheese sandwiches on french bread with a dill mayo that I concocted on the spot. And, since man cannot live on grilled cheese alone, I decided to whip up some creamy tomato basil soup for dipping. Why not?

Grown Up Grilled Cheese
French Bread loaf – cut into 5-6″ lengths
Cream Havarti
Baby Swiss

Simple enough, slice the bread in half and butter a hot sandwich press (I used a Foreman Grill). toast the insides of the bread on the buttered griddle while you prepare the dill mayo (recipe below).

Once the inside of the bread is toasted, add an appropriately-sized slice (or two) of each cheese to the bread. I used half a slice of swiss (the slices were pretty large), a slice and a half of both gruyere and muenster, and a slice of havarti.

Slather the top slice of the bun with the dill mayo, close the sandwich and grill for about 3-5 minutes, depending on your grill, or until the cheese is oozing and bubbly and screaming your name. Done.

Grown up grilled cheese with tomato basil soup

Dill Mayo
1/4 c mayonnaise (Blue Plate)
1 Tbsp fresh chopped dill
light sprinkle of lime juice (1/2 tsp)
dash of garlic salt

Tomato Basil Soup
4 medium hot house tomatoes, peeled and seeded
4 cups tomato juice
2 oz package of fresh basil, chopped (15 leaves or so, roughly 1/3 c when chopped)
1 stick (1/2c) butter. Real butter. sliced into Tbsps
1 cup heavy whipping cream
pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
salt and pepper to taste

To peel the tomatoes, put enough water in a large pot to submerge the tomatoes. Bring the water to a boil. Slice X’s in the bottom of the tomatoes, just deep enough to go through the skin. Drop the tomatoes into the boiling water just until the skin begins to wrinkle and peel back. Transfer them to a bowl full of ice water to stop them from cooking. The skin should come right off. Easy peasy.

Cut the tomatoes open and remove the seeds and gel. Add them to a large pot with the tomato juice, and boil for 30 minutes or until the tomatoes turn to a deliciously soft mushy state. Add the chopped basil to the bottom of a blender, then top it with the hot tomatoes. Blend until thoroughly incorporated and return to pot.

Over low heat, add the butter to the soup mixture and stir until the butter melts. DO NOT BOIL! Remove from heat, add the cream, and salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm with your grown-up grilled cheese. Garnish with basil or cream if you’d like.

Undeniably comforting!



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