Friday, November 9, 2012

The Perfect Grilled Cheese


At the dawn of summer each year I give myself one treat, a tradition I have maintained since college, probably because it is cheap and can be made with even the fewest number of functioning brain cells.

It is incredibly detailed and has to be followed to the very last provision.  Do you want to know what it is?  Well it's too late now because I'm gonna tell ya!

I buy one loaf of Sunbeam white bread.  Very important!

Then I walk a few aisles down and pick up one package of sliced American cheese.

Then I go home, pull out a skillet, grab the butter and get to work.  Oh and butter isn't on the grocery list because if I don't already have butter in my fridge you had better check my pulse or start running because my body has been invaded by zombies!

I always have butter in my fridge.

Each day for lunch I make myself a grilled cheese...the BEST grilled cheese in the world!  After all, this tradition has been going on long enough that I have had PLENTY of practice!

Sometimes it isn't just for lunch...sometimes it is a mid-morning snack, an after-school treat, or just a "I am poor and need something to eat" kind of delight!

You see I am of the belief that if you deny yourself of life's greatest pleasure you will be a lonely, unhappy, bitter being and who wants to be that person, so every once in a while everyone must indulge...within reason of course!

So I thought I would share my secrets...lay it all out there!

Here is how to make the perfect grilled cheese... 

Grab a small non-stick skillet and throw in a pat of butter.  This is a southern form of measurement that leaves plenty of room for interpretation but basically less than a tablespoon but more than a sliver of butter.  Heat over medium-high heat.  Do not put it on high or you will more than likely burn your bread!
Once the better has melted swirl it around the pan to make sure every last inch is coated in butter.  You don't want a thick pool of butter, just a perfect thin coating across the pan.
Lay one piece of bread in the pan and top it with a piece (or two) of American cheese.
Lay the other piece of bread atop the cheese making sure that the outline of the bread coincides with that of the bottom piece.  Ok, that isn't crucial but it really crates on my OCD tendencies when they are not aligned!
Take a spatula and SQUISH, SMUSH and basically swirl it around to make sure your thin coat of butter is not on the bread and no longer visible on the pan.
Here is a critical moment in my grilled cheese making technique....Slide the spatula under the bread, remove the sandwich from the skillet....ADD MORE BUTTER....and return the sandwich to the pan, uncooked side down.  You want to make sure there is equal opportunity for each side to receive the same golden cripiness which is impossible if only one side receives the butter!
Once the sandwich is golden brown on each side remove it from the pan, slice diagonally (this is critical as it will not taste the same cut any other way) and enjoy!
This my dear readers is my guilty little secret and my foolproof technique for making the most delicious grilled cheese sandwich!
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