With my non-stop travel schedule, I’ve learned some rules for airport dining – Rule #1: those pre-packaged airport sandwiches should be avoided whenever possible. They range from soggy and insipid to rock hard and dry, with not much in between. The lettuce, usually green leaf, is wilted, the chicken overcooked, and the dry bread is usually lacking any spread. Last weekend, and to my surprise, I grabbed a noteworthy sandwich from La Provence Café at LAX. The sandwich itself was simple enough – a baguettini stratified with sliced turkey breast, sautéed mushrooms, brie cheese and a few red onions – and it was more than satisfying. The cashier asked me if I’d like it warmed up; I declined since consumption was sure to be hours away, but heated, with the ripe brie oozing and comingling with mushrooms and fresh bread would surely have been divine. I couldn’t help but think it would have only been improved with a thin veil of arugula pistou.
In honor of my little turkey-brie sandwich that got me through a 6.5 hour flight, I have decided to dedicate the next few posts to the humble sandwich.
The Ultimate Classic Grilled Cheese Sandwich
Inspired by Cowgirl Creamery Cooks
Makes 1 Sandwich
1 oz cream cheese
1.5 oz white cheddar, grated
1.5 oz fontina cheese, grated
2 slices crusty sourdough bread
unsalted butter room temperature
Combine all three cheeses. Generously top one slice of bread with all of cheese mixture and cover with other slice. Butter both sides of sandwich and place in a preheated cast-iron skillet set on medium. Cook slowly (low and slow is key) until golden brown underneath, flip with a fish spatula and cook other side. Cheese should ooze out and create brown crispy side bits and bread should be crisp and golden.
Replace cheddar with mild blue cheese, replace sourdough with cranberry walnut bread. Add Dijon mustard and caramelized onions and green apples – messy and rich!