Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Grilled Cheese Sandwich & Tomato Soup, Taken up a Notch

To me, a classic lunch combination is grilled cheese sandwich with tomato soup. To some it may seem too adolescent, too gluten filled, or just too plain for a developed, sophisticated palette. I beg to differ. Just as Mac-n-Cheese has seen a gourmet reinvention as seen by the single theme restaurants that only serve Mac-n-Cheese in NYC with anything from bacon to truffles to pump it up. I think it's time to upscale and de-gluten the grilled cheese and tomato soup.

First step - find a decent gluten free bread. I have not had time to work out a recipe for gluten free bread, so decided to try what is available in the freezer section at the health food store. An attentive employee guided me to the Glutino
Premium Harvest Corn Bread as the most popular bread with their customers. At first I was worried that the bread would have a heavy corn flavor but saw the top ingredients were corn starch and tapioca starch. Both of these are very light with little to no flavor. The texture was a little dry, but in a fine powder sense, not gritty. Considering this bread was to be filled with melted cheese and browned with butter, it was the perfect candidate.

This lunch had to be made within 15 minutes, so I used Pacific tomato soup with roasted red pepper. I added in a pinch of Salish salt. Any smoked salt would work. This is a great way to punch up the umami flavor. The leeks at the grocery looked so tender and were calling to me to chop them and place a generous amount in between a slice of mild cheddar and a slice of Swiss cheese. Assemble this within two slices of the buttered bread, with the buttered side out. Place into a heated fry pan over medium heat. Allow to turn golden brown before turning - about 3-5 minutes. It is better to caution on the safe side since the gluten free bread tends to brown readily, then just turn it more often. Remove from the pan and allow to rest for one minute so it sets up a bit without oozing too much while cutting. I prefer to cut my grilled cheese into strips for dipping. This bread worked really well with a great texture, mild flavor, and the bottom side even got that slightly moist texture. I am so happy it is officially grilled cheese month!

-Erin Swing
The Sensitive Epicure


Sophie Sportende Foodie said...

Looks lovely, I must say!
Have a Happy Easter!!

Anonymous said...

Oh, that sounds so delectable, I am graving a grill cheese sandwish, I can't stand it.. I want a bunch of them... my mouth, needs it, wants it, has to have it...