sage grilled cheese

You all know how much I love Alice Waters and Julia Child (as in I’m totally obsessed, think they are beyond awesome ladies, and wish I could meet them) … well, I have a new crush to add to that list: Judy Rodgers. Judy rocks and so does her cookbook The Zuni Cafe Cookbook.  Recently, Judy taught me the importance of salting early (do it, it will improve meat ten-fold) and how to make this incredible grilled cheese.

Everyone love grilled cheese because there is absolutely nothing bad about it. Well, this recipe is no exception.

Sage Grilled Cheese, from The Zuni Cafe Cookbook
Makes four sandwiches

About a dozen fresh sage leaves
2 T olive oil
1/2 t fresh black pepper
8 slices 1/4 inch thick from a chewy, peasant-style bread (we used a sour batard)
4 oz Fontina or Swiss Gruyere, coarsely grated or sliced thin

Chop the sage. Place it in your smallest saucepan, add the oil, pepper and set over low heat. Warm to the touch. Turn of heat and let the oil infuse while you assemble the sandwiches.

Blanket the bread with cheese, taking care to bring the cheese all the way to the end. Top with another slice of bread. Lay a heavy cutting board over the sandwiches to press them for about 20 minutes.

Preheat a griddle or cast-iron pan over low heat.

Use a brush to spread the oil on both faces of the sandwiches. Add to the pan and cook until golden, 2 – 3 minutes per side. Keep the heat low so you don’t burn the sage or pepper.

Eat while still hot!

Conclusions: I love you Judy! Way to take something that is already great and make it even better! So simple, so perfect. Totally worth the extra few minutes of prep. I mean, look at that sandwich!

-Emily