Grilled cheese sandwiches are a guilty pleasure of mine. When I lived on Capitol Hill, if Mindy and I both happened to come home sometime after midnight on the same night, you’d probably catch us drowsily eating at our kitchen table together — quesadilla in Mindy’s hands, and a grilled cheese in mine. Sharing the frying pan and teddy bear spatula was always an option (the bear spatula is no longer manufactured, but this is my favorite spatula for flipping and cutting sandwiches).
Making grilled cheese sandwiches between midnight and 4 AM has its advantages: simplicity, extra butter, and no regrets. Making grilled cheese sandwiches at brunch also has its advantages: ability to use a knife without ending up in the ER, healthier choices, and sometimes, less cheese all over the kitchen counter.
It’s no secret that goat cheese is hands-down my favorite cheese. This does not explain why I’ve never made a grilled cheese sandwich with goat cheese before.
Perhaps it was because I was raised on an upscale classic: sourdough bread instead of white bread, and sharp cheddar instead of American. Light margarine or butter on both sides of both slices of bread.
With that, you really can’t go wrong. But we try to be creative. This grilled cheese remix is a great option for a refreshing lunch on a hot summer day. And who doesn’t love the crunch of a fresh cucumber?
Lots of photos in this post today… I couldn’t stop clicking. Cucumbers are just so pretty.
Cucumber Goat Cheese Grilled Cheese (makes two sandwiches)
2 slices of whole wheat sourdough bread (or 4 halved slices, if the boule is large)
1 small package plain goat cheese — leave this out for an hour or so to reach room temperature
2 Japanese cucumbers, in 1/8-inch slices
Heat a cast iron skillet (don’t have one? this is a great affordable option you will not regret) and over the stove — first at high heat to get the pan very hot, but then reduce the flame all the way to low. We like the slow-cooked grilled cheese sandwiches.
Using a pastry brush, lightly coat each side of each slice of bread. Spread a healthy layer of goat cheese on the bottom slice, and then arrange your cucumber slices on top of the goat cheese. Carefully place the first half of your sandwich on the skillet, and sprinkle with salt and pepper, if you like.
Then, spread a thin layer of goat cheese on the next slice. Place this slice on top of the first one, and let it sit on the stove for about five minutes — make sure your heat is LOW. Use a spatula to lift the bottom slice — if it’s nice and golden, go ahead and flip your sandwich. Let that side sit for four to five minutes. When the second side is just as golden, go ahead and remove the sandwich from the pan. Repeat for sandwich number two, and serve with remaining cucumber slices, if you haven’t been munching on them already.