The party is over – birthday dreams behind me – time to get to blogging for the real world. Truth be told, I love sinfully delicious gourmet dishes. However; in the real world, I don’t always prepare gourmet suppers. Those are reserved for special occasions. Once upon a time, we entertained on a regular bases with over the top, gourmet restaurant style dinner parties. Back then, I was a stay-at-home “mom” to our grandson. There was time to shop and plan and prepare. As Kiddo got older, with scouting and meetings and PTA fundraisers and – well, you get the picture.
Recently I read an article that rubbed me the wrong way. It dealt with gourmet meals and our cooking/blogging habits. The bottom line of the article was that what we watch, what we read and what we actually prepare each night are two different styles completely. Sure, we all tune into Top Chef and stare in wide wonder at the beautiful dishes these competitors create. We read the magazines with the glossy pictures of duck breasts in a wine reduction sauce and might even ear-mark the page. This Holy writer was belittling our open a can attitude when it comes to preparing a meal. Hum, you try running to soccer games, running a home, running to this and that and the other thing and see how much time you can spend in the kitchen without a short cut or two. And then there is work – coming home at the end of the day mentally and physically exhausted. Baby, don’t put the home-cook down for living in the real world until you’ve walked a mile in our shoes!
Okay, rant over. Recently, Hubby was in the mood for a grilled ham and cheese sandwich with some fries on the side. Simple. Easy. And frankly a wee bit boring. Add some buttery-garlic with a kiss of Parmesan Cheese to the mix and you’ve just elevated the simple sandwich to a slightly higher level. The key here is not to rush the grilling process. Take is slow – and wait until the very end to add the buttery-garlic-Parmesan finish. It’s butter, grill, flip, butter, grill, flip, garlic-Parmesan, grill, flip, garlic-Parmesan, grill – enjoy!
Grilled sandwiches are great for lunch all on their own, or for an easy weeknight supper with fries or a macaroni salad (pictured with Hawaiian Macaroni Salad with Spam). These sandwiches are super delicious, all crisp and buttery and oh so good!
Grilled Ham and Cheese on Buttery Garlic Sourdough
Ingredients – Butter
4 tablespoons melted butter
2 teaspoons finely grated Parmesan Cheese
½ Teaspoon Garlic Powder
Melt butter in microwave. Add Parmesan cheese to melted butter, season with garlic power and whisk to blend well. Set aside until ready to use.
Ingredients – Ham & Cheese
1 lb Deli Thin Sliced Ham
8 Slices American Cheese
8 Slices Sour Dough bread
Soft Butter for bread
Heat griddle pan to 300 degrees. You want your bread to toast slowly, giving ample time for the cheese to melt and the ham to warm.
On a cutting board or other work space, make 4 sandwiches by placing 2 slices of American Cheese on 4 slices of sourdough bread to completely cover bread, overlapping in the middle if necessary. Divide the deli ham (I like Black Forest) between the 4 sandwich bottoms.
Top each sandwich with a second slice of bread, then lightly butter the top slice.
Place sandwiches on griddle, butter side down. While sandwiches are grilling, lightly butter top slice of bread with a little butter.
Grill until bottom bread slice is golden brown and cheese has begun to melt, about 4 or 5 minutes. Using a large spatula, carefully flip sandwich over and continue to grill until bread is golden, pressing down slightly to help cheeses to blend.
Toasted side should now be up. Brush with melted garlic butter while other side of bread is grilling. Let melted butter soak into bread. Flip and grill garlic side about 1 or 2 minutes, just until bread begins to brown more deeply. Keep an eye on the Parmesan so that it does not burn.
Brush side that is now up with melted butter. Flip sandwich one last time to toast the Parmesan. Let grill for 1 or 2 minutes, remove from griddle and enjoy.