The Real Grilled Cheese Sandwich
In all my years, a grand total of 32, I never understood why we call a grilled cheese sandwich, “grilled cheese”, when we put it in a pan. I guess “pan fried cheese sandwich” doesn’t roll of the tongue as well. I always had the original when I grew up; white bread, American cheese, buttered and pan fried, and I made it that way myself once I started cooking. Now I’m a bit more experienced and a bit more mature… a bit, but I still love a good grilled cheese sandwich. So I decided to make it the way I thought it always should have been, on the grill. This grilled cheese has thick cut homemade sourdough that I brushed with melted butter, sprinkled with smoked paprika and layered with smoky grilled bacon, cheddar, Monterrey jack and Havarti cheeses. This grilled cheese will satisfy a mature palate and the kid in you as well.
4 Slices Sourdough or French Bread
3oz Shredded Mild Cheddar
3oz Shredded Havarti
3oz Shredded Monterrey Jack
6 Slices Bacon
2 Tspn Smoked Paprika
2oz (4 Tbs) Melted Butter
Makes 2 sandwiches.
It’s important to mention that the bread can be whatever you want, however if you are going to put this sandwich on the grill, I highly recommend that it be something with some body to it. I can’t imagine a slice of white bread not getting burnt before the cheese can even melt, plus… don’t settle for plain white bread, ever. Life is too short for cheap bread. Preheat the grill to medium-high, get some long tongs and grill the bacon. Why long tongs? The bacon fat is going to cause flare ups and is going to need to be moved quite a bit, so unless you don’t have any particular attachment to your hand’s skin and hair, use long tongs. I also suggest only grilling 3-4 strips at a time.
Turn the grill down to medium. Brush one side of each of the slices of bread with the melted butter and dust with smoked paprika. Layer the cheeses in no particular order, but put the bacon in the middle. When the cheeses melt they will act like glue and hold the sandwich together, so you need to make sure both sides of the bread touch cheese. When all assembled, put the sandwiches on the grill and close the lid, this will help the cheese melt. After only 2-3 minutes or so, turn the sandwich 90º. After 2 more minutes, very carefully use tongs to flip the sandwich, which should hold together now. Repeat grilling as side one and you’re done.