05 February 2011

A Better Grilled Cheese Sandwich & Tomato Soup

When it comes to quick and easy comfort food there isn’t much that can beat a good grilled cheese sandwich and some homemade creamy tomato soup.

I’ve been craving a grilled cheese sandwich for a couple of days and finally got the chance to make one tonight for dinner. But I decided to upscale it a bit and used brie cheese. And really, doesn’t brie make everything better?

In addition to craving grilled cheese, my sweet tooth was kicking in. So to kill two birds… my sandwich also included some thinly sliced Honeycrisp apples and was built on a base of cranberry-walnut bread. Then for good measure I added some thinly sliced Virginia ham. It was a warm, melty-gooey goodness of sweet, salty, crisp, and tart. Darned near heaven...

Apple Brie Grilled Cheese

To make one sandwich:
2 slices cranberry-walnut bread (or your high quality crusty bread of choice)
1-2 thin slices deli Virginia ham
1/2 a small Honeycrisp apple, thinly sliced
Enough slices of brie cheese (rind removed) to fill your bread

Place brie on one slice of bread. Layer the apple slices and ham on top of the cheese. Butter the outside of the bread and place in a frying pan over medium-low heat. Grill one side until golden brown and toasty; flip. Grill the second side until golden, and the cheese is melted.

If you don’t like your cheese to ooze out of the sandwich, remove from the pan and let sit for a minute or two before cutting & plating. Enjoy!

The soup recipe is a tomato basil soup from the My Kitchen, My Sanctuary blog. 

I made the soup this past fall when I still had some remnant fresh tomatoes and basil from the garden to use up. I wisely froze a few containers for later quick-meal use. That first taste – a flash burst of fresh tomato flavor – was like summer coming to life again, a very welcome feeling during these long winter days than seem to never end. Really, is there anything that says summer to your taste buds more succinctly than fresh, ripe tomatoes? It was a perfect remedy for a cold winter night…

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