Wednesday, August 10, 2011

It's just a sandwich, so get over it!

A while ago a new fad hit the food scene...the Panini. People went crazy over the concept of putting cheeses, sometimes meats and/or veggies too, onto bread, into a "panini press" and toasting it. News Flash!!! Panini is Italian for the word "sandwich", and what I just basically described was the good old American Grilled Cheese sandwich. I laughed my butt off when a member of a reality show (Real Housewives of New Jersey) was going on and on about needing her Panini. In other words, call a simple comfort food a fancy name, give it a fancy price, and that makes it something more worthwhile? No, sorry dear, it's a grilled cheese sandwich, so get over it now.

No matter what your age, you have probably had a grilled cheese sandwich sometime in your life. People just love it and you can make it as simple or special as you want it to be. I usually use potato or oatnut (Oroweat brand), 3 slices of cheese and soft spread butter to create mine...simple and quick. I use a stove top flat grill pan, melt a couple tablespoons of butter on high heat; place the buttered sides of the bread on the grill. Then I place 2 slices of cheese on one unbuttered side, 1 on the other unbuttered side. When I see the cheese beginning to melt on the bread, then it's time to flip them together to make a sandwich. I press the bread down, so the ends will seal together and the cheese won't ooze onto the grill.

When it comes to cheese, American is the best, but sometimes I enjoy using different types. A combo of American with Swiss or Provolone; Colby Jack with Provolone; Pepper Jack with get the picture. Maybe I want something more filling, so add bacon or thinly sliced Black Forest Ham; maybe some spicy mustard, maybe not. One of Roy's favorites is oatnut bread, 3 slices of American, thick cut applewood bacon and thinly sliced tomato. I enjoy tuna melts, so American cheese and tuna that is yummy!

So, if you want to be snooty, go get yourself a Panini. If you want to be real, have an old fashioned grilled cheese sandwich. Whatever floats your little boat.

Mary Cokenour

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