Friday, April 3, 2015

Grilled Cheese - Butter Vs. Miracle Whip

I love a good grilled cheese sandwich. In high school, I used to get a grilled cheese and chocolate chip cookies for lunch almost daily. The school's convection oven would toast up the bread but leave it buttery and the cheese was always perfectly melted. And the cookies were barely cooked and more like cookie dough than cookies. They were a hit with everyone and sold out daily!

Grilled cheese is a simple sandwich but oh so delicious. Recently I read that people use mayo on the bread instead of butter. This made me really curious and I decided to try it. My guy was on board for this taste test as well so we cooked them up one night at his out. We like Miracle Whip over mayo so we used that for the sandwiches.
 I buttered and Miracle Whipped the breads with equal amounts and waited for the pan to heat up.

 We made the butter version first so as to not have the mayo affect the flavor of our control sandwich.
 It grilled up nicely with two pieces of American cheese inside - all melty and gooey.

 Then it was Miracle Whips turn to show us what its got.
 It grilled up differently and left the bread softer, making it harder to flip. I kept mushing the bread.
 I had to flip it multiple times to get it to brown up and get crisp on the outside.
 Finally it was done.
We cut each sandwich in half and began the taste test. The sandwich with butter was crisp on the outside with melty cheese in the middle - just as I like it. The Miracle Whip sandwich was softer on the outside and was harder to cut without tearing the bread. However, the Miracle Whip added a unique tang to the sandwich that I quite enjoyed. I wish the bread would crisp up more. Possibly a "firmer" bread could help to not have the sandwich be as soft. These were made with Sara Lee Old Fashioned bread. It is a softer bread and one of my guy's favorites. 
I picked up some seafood bisque from Key Westconsin for us to have with the sandwiches. This was excellent - a tad spicy, but dunking the sandwiches in it brought the spice down to my level. I felt so grown up with my fancy tomato soup (bisque) and unique grilled cheese.
I recently got a Cuisinart Griddler and love making Panini sandwiches on it. I haven't tried Miracle Whip on it yet, but I think the pressing of the bread would definitely help it crisp up.
Here is a ham and white American cheese sandwich that I made recently to test out the press. I used Extra Virgin Olive Oil on the bread instead of butter (per the instruction book's suggestion). And I used Brownberry Country Sourdough - a firmer bread.
Once your sandwich is made, you press the lid down lightly for 30 seconds and then let the sandwich cook for about 5 minutes. I checked on it a few times when I heard sizzling and it was browning nicely.
Voila! The final product. It had cheese oozing out of the side of the sandwich, so I now know that one piece of cheese will be plenty for a Panini.
 The sandwich was very crisp on the outside and warm and melty on the inside. I love Paninis!
I can't wait to experiment with it more and show you other sandwiches that I have created on it.

Cafe de Arts has some excellent Panini sandwiches. Let me just hint at a roast beef Panini I made for my guy based off of a sandwich from Cafe, that he told me was the best thing I have ever made for him! That will be on the blog soon!

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