Sure, I still make pasta dishes, or chicken and peppers on some nights, but that is because they're easy to prep and quick to cook. And it doesn't take a lot of thought. And I can be lazy.
But sometimes you just want something to have a comfort factor to it too.
Mac & Cheese fit that bill. Meatloaf. Stuff like that. The standards.
Then there is grilled cheese and soup.
Last week - though not noted here - I made a grilled cheese a different way. In that, you don't butter the bread, but melt the butter in the pan and put the bread in there. And you use shredded cheese. BUT - once you flip the sandwich, you add / press cheese into the top of the bread......then eventually flip again, so the cheese makes a crust on the bread. Do the same to the other side. It isn't bad at all.
But America's Test Kitchen (or was it Cook's Country?) last year did a show on Grown Up Grilled Cheese. It was actually a taste test of standard grilled cheese and the grown up version. Everyone (at least with clever editing) preferred the latter. So......why not.
I started off making a chicken soup with vegetables and pasta. That was easy enough. The grilled cheese was too.....in a way. The clean up was way worse than anything else.
For four sandwiches:
8 slices - hearty white bread
7oz - aged cheddar cheese (room temp)
2oz - Brie (rind removed)
2T - dry white wine (or vermouth)
4t - minced shallot
3T - room temp unsalted butter
1t - Dijon mustard
Cube the cheddar cheese into 20-24 pieces. I also quartered the Brie. Add the wine as well. Process for 20-30 seconds.
I know. A food processor to make grilled fucking cheese. This is why clean-up for this dish is a little out of proportion for what you're actually making.
It really makes a cheese paste, basically. Add the shallots, and pulse for 4-5 times.
If you don't have a clean-up crew at the ready, like I do - I suggest getting one. They're happy to lick anything clean.
In a separate bowl - mix butter and mustard together.
Spread the butter / mustard mixture on the outside of each piece
Here is the big difference between regular grilled cheese and adult - patience.
In a preheated non-stick skillet reduce the heat to medium-low and cook each side for 8-9 minutes. Yes. 16-18 minute cook time for frickin' grilled cheese.
Then you have to let it stand two additional minutes. This is important as it helps the cheese set-up a little bit. I forgot on the first sandwich and cut in too soon.
Still - it is kind of worth the wait (though I could have had two and not just one and a half).
The combo for the two cheeses and mustard are great. I really think the wine brightens everything up in the flavour category too. And while it's only two tablespoons, I now have an open bottle of wine that must be consumed. So it is a win-win.
Song by: the Pursuit of Happiness