Double Cheddar & Tomato Jam

By Laura Werlin

It seems that almost everybody likes the combination of grilled cheese and tomato soup. The easy-to-make tomato jam is a variation on that theme, because the rich tomato flavor that's usually in the soup goes directly into the sandwich. The double Cheddar is your cue that not only is there cheese on the inside of the sandwich, but it's also on the outside. The result is a little sweet, a little savory, a little crunchy, a little salty, and a lot enjoyable.

Makes 4 sandwiches


Ingredients:

12 ounces Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese
4 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
8 sandwich-size slices sourdough
6 tablespoons Tomato Jam (see recipe below)

Cooking Directions:

Using the very small holes of a box grater or other similar-size grating device, finely grate 6 ounces of the Cheddar. Place the cheese in a small bowl. Add the butter and, using the back of a fork, mash the mixture until the cheese is well incorporated into the butter.

Using the large holes of a box grater or other similar-size grating device, grate the remaining cheese.

To assemble: Spread the Cheddar-butter mixture on one side of each of the bread slices.

Place 4 slices of bread, buttered side down, on your work surface. Spread 1 1/2 tablespoons of jam on each slice. Distribute the cheese, and top with remaining bread slices, buttered side up.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over a medium heat for 2 minutes. Put the sandwiches into the pan, cover, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, until golden brown. Turn the sandwiches, pressing each one firmly with a spatula to flatten slightly. Cover and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until the undersides are well browned (watch carefully because the cheese on the outside of the bread can darken quickly). Turn the sandwiches once more, press firmly with the spatula again, cook for 1 minute, and remove from the pan. Let cool for 5 minutes. Cut in half and serve.

For sandwich maker method: Preheat the sandwich maker. Follow directions for assembly above. Cook according to manufacturer's instructions.

Tomato Jam

Ingredients:

6 large ripe tomatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds) peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped (use Roma tomatoes if it isn’t tomato season)
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 1/2 tablespoons sugar (if you're making this in the middle of tomato season when tomatoes are at their sweetest, reduce the sugar by 1 to 2 teaspoons)
Salt

Cooking Directions:

To make the jam: Place all the ingredients in a medium-size saucepan over medium-low heat. The mixture should bubble ever so slightly but not boil. Cook for about 1 hour, or until the jam has thickened and most of the liquid has evaporated. Let cool. (You can make this up to 1 week in advance. Store in the refrigerator).

Recipe from Grilled Cheese, Please! by Laura Werlin.
Photographs by Maren Caruso.
Published by Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC ,
an Andrews McMeel Universal Company
All Rights Reserved.