Reinventing the Grilled Cheese Sandwich

There really aren’t too many things more delicious than warm, melty, gooey cheese. Especially good cheese. I mean, think about all the foods we eat smothered in melted cheese – pizza, nachos, lasagna, cheeseburgers, enchiladas, chili cheese fries, and, of course, grilled cheese sandwiches.

So if all those other foods get lots of other sauces and flavors, then why not grilled cheese sandwiches? Probably because it’s really easy to just slap a slice of cheese between two pieces of bread and toss it in a pan for a few minutes. But it really doesn’t take much longer to throw on a couple of extra ingredients to take your sandwich from tasty to amazing.

I’ve been experimenting a bit lately with this, so this will be the first of a few posts to give you some ideas on how to impress your friends, children, coworkers, and/or tastebuds with your grilled cheese awesomeness!

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A lot of what makes these more “gourmet” grilled cheese sandwiches work is knowing what flavors will complement the flavor of different types of cheeses.

save moneyNow I know, cheese can get expensive, so you’re probably not going to be buying lots of fancy expensive cheese just to make sandwiches. But if you look at the grocery store where they sell all the deli cheeses, there’s usually a little bin of “remnants” – small chunks leftover from the bigger blocks – that you can get pretty cheap. Plus, if you decide you don’t like that particular cheese, you only bought a little bit!

So here’s the first “Reinvented” Grilled Cheese for you:

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I used Muenster cheese for this sandwich – it has a nice mild taste, so the sweetness of the pears and the nutty flavor of the roasted sunflower seeds complement it nicely.

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Just butter the outside of the bread, layer the cheese, sunflower seeds, and pear slices, and put it on the stove in a small frying pan.

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Tip: To get your cheese nice and melty without burning your bread, cover the pan with a lid or foil to keep the heat in. And don’t get too impatient and turn up the heat – it’ll just burn your bread before the sandwich is heated through. It only takes a few minutes!

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Muenster Pear and Sunflower Seed Grilled Cheese

2 slices of whole wheat bread (or any bread you like)
1-2 thin slices of pear
a few slices of Muenster cheese (enough to cover the size of the bread)
1 Tbsp sunflower seeds
butter

1. Butter one side of each slice of bread.

2. Layer the cheese, sunflower seeds, and pear slices on one slice of bread (not on the buttered side). Put the other slice, buttered side out, on top.

3. Place in a small frying pan over medium heat. Tip: Cover with a lid or foil to help the cheese melt faster without burning the bread. After a few minutes, flip the sandwich over. When bread is nicely toasted and cheese is melted, remove from pan and enjoy!