14 April 2011

The Secret to an Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Oka and Chipotle Grilled Cheese Sandwich

I was going to post this photo for Wordless Wednesday since I think it speaks for itself, but when am I ever wordless:D Instead I will make a recipe out of a non-recipe.


What is your favourite comfort food? For me it would be a toss up between my homemade macaroni and cheese from the Beechers recipe or my quest for the ooey, gooey ribbons of delectable melted cheese of the perfect grilled cheese sandwich. The latter I would make most often since it is the satisfying, back-up meal that anyone can throw together with zero time and a practically empty refrigerator. In my humble opinion the grilled cheese sandwich is the epitome of comfort foods and simplicity in cooking. It's astounding to see what can be done with the basic staples of bread and cheese. This post is perfectly timed to coincide with National Grilled Cheese Month but then again I am willing to celebrate cheese anytime!!!

 Crisp and crunchy on the outside, gooey and warm on the inside I don't think there is anything more satisfying than a perfectly grilled cheese sandwich!. The key lies in the quality of the ingredients. Never has this held so true if you want to go beyond processed cheese slices and stale bread. A good grilled cheese sandwich has three very important components... bread... cheese...and butter.

The bread is the Holy Grail for the success of your sandwich. White bread has the best butter-soaking abilities of any bread I have tested, although you can substitute it for a healthier alternatives if you feel inclined. Whatever you choose it must be of the best quality that you can find. The same goes for butter; nothing beats the taste of good-quality buttery toast, but if you’re trying to keep a healthier diet, buttery spreads can often rival in taste.

The next component is the cheese. Most often I use a good quality Canadian Cheddar cheese but for an outstanding substitute why not try a Canadian Oka. This is the perfect melting cheese and will create the ooey, gooey goodness that we demand from a grilled cheese sandwich.

If any cheese is native to Canada, it’s Oka. Oka  is a type of Port Salut cheese, first made in Brittany, France by the Trappist monks. To supplement their income and make the monastary self sustaining they started producing cheese in Canada. History finds that monks created some of the best cheese and wines. They are backed up by years of experience to perfect their technique! A semi-soft cow's milk cheese that's creamy, nutty and fruity was made by the monks in Oka, Quebec a small village situated on the north shore of the Lake of the Two Mountains, just southwest of MontrĂ©al. Oka is traditionally covered with an orange rind that’s washed in brine and aged on cypress wood planks. In 1974, Agropur, Canada’s largest cheese cooperative bought the rights to produce Oka from the monks. Their cheese is made just down the street from the original Trappist Monk's monastery.

You haven't lived until you've added this cheese to your cheese fondue for a silky texture or tried it in a grilled cheese sandwich. The Beechers Macaroni and Cheese has spoiled me for life and no other recipe will grace my home kitchen. The secret to their dynamite "mac" is a small amount of chipotle pepper in the sauce. Why not sprinkle a little of this secret ingredient on your grilled cheese sandwich made with nutty Oka cheese for an added taste dimension. Add a garlic dill pickle on the side and you have a match made in heaven.


One year ago today: Salmon, Asparagus and Watercress Salad
Two Years Ago: Pasta anto te from David Rocco
Three Years Ago Today: Canlis House Signature Salad
Four Years Ago Today: My Favourite Falafel


**My Ultimate Grilled Cheese Sandwich**


Good quality bread
Butter
Oka cheese slices
Sprinkle of chipotle pepper
Dill pickles

Butter both sides of slices of bread; add a slice of your favourite cheese. I like to sprinkle the cheese with a small amount of chipotle pepper. Top with a second slice of bread.

On a medium heat let the pan heat up for about 15 seconds then glide the sandwich into the pan.

Next, cover the pan with a lid. Doing this helps evenly distribute the heat to the sandwich for optimum melting. Grilling the first side of your grilled cheese should only take about six minutes, but keep an eye on it depending on the heat of your stove top. No one wants a burned grilled cheese sandwich!

When the underside of the sandwich is golden brown and the cheese is melting out the sides, turn over the sandwich and brown the other side over medium heat.  The second side grills much faster than the first, 1 – 2 minutes. So stand guard! Once the second side is crisp and golden, remove it from the pan, slice your sandwich and serve with some garlic dill pickles. The combination can't be beat!!!

You are reading this post on More Than Burnt Toast at http://morethanburnttoast.blogspot.com. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and or owner of More Than Burnt Toast. All rights reserved by Valerie Harrison. Best Blogger Tips

36 comments:

  1. I am still trying to burn off the calories from the mac 'n cheese I made earlier this week! I'm never seen, much less tried, Oka but it sounds delicious. And yes, that grilled cheese does speak for itself!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Comforting and so scrumptious! I love those different etxtures...

    Cheers,

    Rosa

    ReplyDelete
  3. I don't how this is possible given how much I enjoy cheese, but I've never had Oka. I need to try this! And, that is one amazing-looking sandwich.

    ReplyDelete
  4. One of my very favourite easy suppers - grilled cheese and tomato soup!

    ReplyDelete
  5. you had me and my entire being at "gooey ribbons"!

    ReplyDelete
  6. heavenly...sigh...i'm sooo hungry.

    ReplyDelete
  7. OMFG. Oka in a grilled cheese sandwich? What an awesome smelly* sandwich. I've got to try that the next time we buy Oka.

    *my wife says the best cheese "smells like ze feet of angels."

    ReplyDelete
  8. I had a total fail of a grilled cheese last week. I broke some mayo making it, and figured I could at least use it as an eggy dip for the bread. It ended up an oily mess!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Great post, Val! From the photo, to the copy, to the chipotle tip. And you really make me want to get in the kitchen and make a grilled cheese.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I love grilled cheese and tomato soup - the ultimate comfort food meal! Your grilled cheese looks so amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  11. that grilled cheese definitely looks like it's the absolutely perfect amount of ooey and gooey! I need to find some of that cheese!

    ReplyDelete
  12. In one swoop you produced a perfect picture of a perfect sandwich. Well done. Have a great day, Val. Blessings...Mary

    ReplyDelete
  13. Oh my God !! The cheese running is tempting me,and love oka too, fabulous sandwich, Val.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I can be silent for this and just look adoringly at the photo. All that oozing cheese.......

    Remind me to leave in an hour.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Im without words Val!! I love sandwich but this look fantastic! xgloria

    ReplyDelete
  16. That sandwich literally oozes goodness...OH MY!

    ReplyDelete
  17. A few high quality ingredients done right is a beautiful thing! I'll have to keep my eyes peeled for the recommended cheese.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Port Salut is one of the cheeses on my wish list. Grilled cheese sounds perfect for my lunch today ;)

    ReplyDelete
  19. Val, you know how to tease and taunt :)

    ReplyDelete
  20. I've never tasted Oka Cheese and your grilled cheese looks so good! Lunch today was Grilled Cheese on Raisin Bread. :)
    ~Judy

    ReplyDelete
  21. What a fantastic grilled cheese sandwich. Sometimes I try different breads for my grilled cheese. It depends in which mood I am in.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Comfort food to the nth degree! I'm not familiar with the Oka but will look for it. I'd love a cup of tomato soup on the side!!

    Best,
    Bonnie

    ReplyDelete
  23. No words, the oozing cheese got me, got me good!

    ReplyDelete
  24. All of that gooey delicious cheese has me craving one of those now! I love your suggestion of the chipotle powder. :)

    ReplyDelete
  25. Mmmmm mmmm! Love the dill pickle :-)

    ReplyDelete
  26. perfection, is right! Look at all that cheese! You're doing a great job with your new camera. Bravo!

    ReplyDelete
  27. I wholeheartedly agree that a great grilled cheese really has to do with the quality of the ingredients. Yours sounds utterly divine especially with the Oka cheese which is new to me, but I love Port Salut which I can get at Trader Joe's.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Two of my favorite things: melted cheese and chipotle!

    ReplyDelete
  29. You really got me with this sandwich and the bit of heat...Great post...

    ReplyDelete
  30. That first shot truly made me drool.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Val, this is the ULTIMATE! Thanks for the info on Oka. I have not heard of it. I will be on the lookout.

    ReplyDelete
  32. I'm with you on cheesy things being favorite things. :-) I've never even heard of Oka cheese!! Can't wait to check out my local cheese shop and see if they have it. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  33. grilled cheese sammies are definitely an ultimate comfort food--heck, i feel better just having seen these pictures! :)

    ReplyDelete
  34. I just found my Tuesday night dinner. Side of tomato soup and I will be in HEAVEN!

    ReplyDelete

Welcome to my home. Thank you so much for choosing to stay a while and for sharing our lives through food. I appreciate all your comments, suggestions, daily encouragement and support.

Val

This blog uses comment moderation therefore SPAMMERS, SELF-PROMOTERS and ADVERTISERS will be deleted.