Friday, May 9, 2008

Mozzarella & Tomato Jam Grilled Cheese

There are a few things, kitchen-wise, that everyone should know how to do:
1. fry, scramble, or boil an egg
2. boil pasta
3. mix up a good cocktail
4. make a grilled cheese sandwich

If you have mastered the above skills you will never go hungry, and you'll probably be able to host a fairly decent dinner party. It's like what Rabbi Akiva said "....all the rest is commentary", well in this case "...all the rest is Whole Foods".
A grilled cheese sandwich, is, in my opinion, tied with pizza for being the world's best comfort food. Dressed up with fancy french bread and exotic cheese it is a gourmet delight. And when keeping it real (and real easy) with American slices and Wonder bread it has a satisfying junk food appeal. Whenever I eat a grilled cheese sandwich, every bite is accompanied with the wish that it would never end. During my pregnancies the grilled cheese sandwiches actually didn't end until my claim that the baby needed bread and cheese fried in butter was no longer valid.

Today I decided to go a little more high end with a mozzarella grilled cheese sandwich that is elaborated with a layer of sweet 'n savory tomato jam. I didn't have any fresh basil around, but if I did I'd put it in. Cut this up in quarters and you can serve it as an hors d'oeuvre at aforementioned dinner party.

Mozzarella & Tomato Jam Grilled Cheese Sandwich:
tomato jam: dice up 5-6 med. tomatoes (I used plum tomatoes) place in saucepan. Add 1-2 tbsp. sugar, a pinch of salt, 1-2 tsp. balsamic vinegar. Cook and stir over medium heat until the tomatoes get juicy and it comes to a boil. Lower heat and simmer until most of the juice evaporates and the mixture thickens.

Melt 2-3 tbsp. butter in a skillet. Place 1-2 slices of mozzarella on bread, spoon tomato jam on top of cheese, cover with second slice of bread. Put sandwich in melted butter skillet and cook over med. heat. Tamp down sandwich with spatula, flip over and repeat until cheese melts and bread is sufficiently toasty. Say ahhh and serve.

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