Grown-Up Grilled Cheese

Americans eat more than 300 million sandwiches per day. The competition is stiff, so average won’t cut it. Sandwiches provide the perfect blank canvas for culinary creativity and crossutilization of ingredients – a key step in better menu management. Reinvent and refine the nostalgic grilled cheese sandwich with trendy and flavorful additions. Layer them with quality cheeses such as Welsh Cheddar or ricotta and unexpected meats like pulled short ribs or glazed bacon. Bread and fresh toppings are components that can transform a sandwich from mediocre to top-notch. Hearty slices of Texas toast, ciabatta, or sourdough and distinct greens such as arugula or kale will instantly boost appeal. Finish with a drizzle of housemade condiments like a fig and balsamic glaze, herb mayonnaise, or a sweet sauce with brown sugar and maple syrup for a truly custom touch that commands a higher price point.

Jumbo Lump Crab Salad & Welsh Cheddar on Texas Toast
Jumbo Lump Crab Salad & Welsh Cheddar on Texas Toast
Ingredients
For the Crab Salad
For Serving
Servings:
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Instructions
For the Crab Salad
  1. Gently fold together 3 tablespoons breadcrumbs, mayonnaise, celery, onion, lemon juice, and seasoning in a bowl, being careful not to break up crabmeat. Form into 1 large patty; cover and refrigerate 2 hours to allow flavors to meld.
To Serve
  1. Gently press patty into remaining 1 cup of breadcrumbs. In a sauté pan, heat 2 teaspoons oil over medium heat; add patty and cook until both sides are golden brown. Transfer sauté pan to 350°F oven; heat 2 minutes or until heated through.
  2. Coat scallion with remaining 1 teaspoon oil; cook on flat top griddle 2 minutes or until golden brown. Spread 1 side of each slice of Texas toast with butter. Place Texas toast buttered side down on flat top griddle; top 1 slice with cheese, patty, and scallion. Cook until cheese melts; close sandwich and cut in half.Cook until cheese melts; close sandwich and cut in half.

 

Fresh Mozzarella & Ricotta with Rocket, Speck, & Fig Jam on Ciabatta
Fresh Mozzarella & Ricotta with Rocket, Speck, & Fig Jam on Ciabatta
Ingredients
Servings:
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Instructions
  1. Lightly brush both sides of bread slices with oil; grill both sides until charred then brush with more oil and sprinkle with sea salt.
  2. Smear ricotta on 1 piece of bread; stack mozzarella and speck on second piece of bread. Heat cheese side up in 375°F oven 8 minutes or until heated through. Top speck with fig jam and rocket; close sandwich and cut in half.

 

Pulled Short Rib, Glazed Bacon, Onion Marmalade & White Cheddar on Sourdough Ingredients
Pulled Short Rib, Glazed Bacon, Onion Marmalade & White Cheddar on Sourdough Ingredients
Ingredients
Glazed Bacon
Onion Marmalade
Servings:
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Instructions
For the Glazed Bacon
  1. Place a well-oiled rack on sheet tray covered with aluminum foil; place bacon in single layer on rack.
  2. Sprinkle bacon with brown sugar and cracked peppercorns; drizzle with syrup. Bake in 350°F oven for 20 minutes; cool on rack.
For the Onion Marmalade
  1. Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat; add onion and sauté 4 minutes, stirring to evenly coat with oil. Stir in vinegar and honey; reduce heat and cook uncovered 50 minutes or until onion is softened, stirring occasionally. Adjust heat as necessary to avoid scorching; season with salt and pepper.
To Serve
  1. Heat short ribs in sauté pan until heated through.
  2. Liberally brush 1 side of each slice of bread with duck fat; place duck fat side down on flat top griddle. Top each piece with 1 slice cheese; place 2 tablespoons onion marmalade over cheese on 1 piece of bread, pile short ribs and bacon over cheese on second piece of bread. Cook until cheese melts; close sandwich and cut in half.