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All due respect to the original, but grilled cheese is one of the best blank canvases in the culinary universe. Here’s how Clark Street Bread's Zack Hall likes to doll up the ultimate stove-top sammie.

“The secret to a really even, super golden, not burnt grilled cheese is mayo—not butter—on the bread," he notes. "Then, to get it super crispy the way everybody likes it, use a brick wrapped in tin foil and sit that right on top while it cooks.”

Grilled Cheese, Three Ways

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Serves: 3

Kimchi Grilled Cheese

Ingredients:

1 tbsp mayonnaise
2 slices country sourdough bread
1 tbsp butter
1/4 cup grated queso Oaxaca cheese
1/4 cup prepared kimchi

1. Heat cast iron skillet over medium heat.

2. Spread mayonnaise over outside of bread slices. Melt butter in skillet; place 1 bread slice, mayonnaise side down, in skillet. Top with grated cheese and kimchi. Cap with remaining bread, mayonnaise side up. Press down with a spatula.

3. Cook, turning once, for 7 to 8 minutes or until golden brown and cheese is melted. To serve, slice in half diagonally.  

Black Truffle Grilled Cheese

Ingredients:

1 tbsp mayonnaise
2 slices country sourdough bread
1 tbsp butter
1/4 cup grated Fontina cheese
1 tbsp thinly sliced fresh black truffles (or 2 tbsp sautéed sliced oyster mushrooms)

1. Heat cast iron skillet set over medium heat.

2. Spread mayonnaise over outside of bread slices. Melt butter in skillet; place 1 bread slice, mayonnaise side down, in skillet. Top with cheese and truffles. Cap with remaining bread, mayonnaise side up. Press down with a spatula.

3. Cook, turning once, for 7 to 8 minutes or until golden brown and cheese is melted. To serve, slice in half diagonally.  

Farmer’s Market Grilled Cheese

Ingredients:

1 tbsp mayonnaise
2 slices country sourdough bread
1 tbsp butter
1/4 cup grated Gruyére cheese
4 asparagus spears, cooked
2 tbsp thinly sliced green garlic or green onions
2 oz cooked country ham (optional)

1. Heat cast iron skillet set over medium heat.

2. Spread mayonnaise over outside of bread slices. Melt butter in skillet; place 1 bread slice, mayonnaise side down, in skillet. Top with cheese, asparagus, green garlic, and ham (if using). Cap with remaining bread, mayonnaise side up. Press down with a spatula.

3. Cook, turning once, for 7 to 8 minutes or until golden brown and cheese is melted. To serve, slice in half diagonally.  

 

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