I don't think I've ever met a combination of cheese, tomato and carbs that I didn't like. This combination came about after watching a Top Chef challenge to invent the best sandwich, to which I psychotically reacted by saying "Challenge Accepted!" But it really is a great sandwich. I visit my local cheese shop La Fromagerie on a weekly basis to explore their cheese room, which is where I'll be running to if and when the apocalypse hits, as it's my happy place. For this sandwich, I asked for their sharpest white cheddar and a really smooth and creamy goat cheese. I was given a Rove de Garrigues and a beautiful Westcombe Cheddar.
There is an art and science to making the perfect grilled cheese. The first hard and fast rule is that you MUST grate the cheese, rather than slice it. It promotes the cheese melting and getting gooey. The second rule is that you must let the pan heat up to skin melting temps before you put the sandwich in the pan. The third and final rule is that you must press the sandwich down whilst it grills. I used a heavy copper pan for this, but if you're into gadgets, a sandwich press does this job admirably.
This grilled cheese combo will be my dying meal. It has been tried and tested and scientifically proven to be the BEST grilled cheese in the world. I upped my game a bit by making a compote butter and spreading it on the outside of the bread. I also tried making this in an open-face version. Guess what? It's awesome both ways.
Goat Cheese and Cheddar Toastie
- 1 loaf of Sourdough bread
- Plum tomatoes, sliced
- White cheddar, grated
- Goat cheese, crumbled
- Thyme leaves, stripped from the stems
- Black Pepper
Butter the outside of your bread slices. If you want to get fancy you could whip in fresh herbs or garlic, but you don't have to. Spread goat cheese crumbles on the non-butter side of the bread. Spread the tomato slices on the bread. Top with the cheddar cheese. Sprinkle the thyme leaves, and a few grates of your pepper mill.
Heat up your cast-iron pan for at least 8 minutes. Gently put your sammy in the pan. Turn heat ot medium, let cook for 2 mins. Flip. Put a heavy pan on top of the sandwich. Flip a few more time until golden brown on both sides.
For the open face version, just layer as per usual but don't put a lid on it, and slide into an oven set on Broil High. Keep an eye on this, you want it golden brown but not burnt around the edges.