Tag Archives: gruyere

The As If – Gruyere, Swiss, Black Garlic Mayo Tuna Salad, and Cherry Peppers Grilled Cheese

When you’re a mid-twenties creative-being trying to do your own thang while living broker than a joke in the city, it’s safe to say that you’re going to have some major ups and downs thrown at you – sometimes in the form of a steaming bag of poop and sometimes on the shiniest silver platter you’ve ever seen. And even though the effects of these highs and lows might sting more than a cheap glass of white zinfandel to the face, they can also lead to some sweet treats.

What the hell am I talking about? Did someone slap the pessimist out of me? Not that I can remember…  I think it has something to do with a super-sweet email that I got from a GCS reader the other day. Like me and every other 20-something I know, she’s been going through a rough spot – crappy boys, unemployment, lost favorite sweater, ya know, the type of problems that don’t necessarily make you want to jump in front of a bus, but still drag ya down. When she opened up and shared, it made me realize that even though the original purpose of starting my blog was to share grilled cheese recipes, the best and most rewarding part has been interacting and relating to you guys.
By inadvertently bitching writing about my own drama, reading your responses has made me realize that I’m not alone in this world. Ridiculously lame things happen to everyone, and even though it’s the pits, it’s important to remember. Basically what I’m getting at is that life can suck sometimes but it can also be really fucking cool, super exciting and completely euphoric. I know it’s not easy making the transition, but I wanted to share some of the ways that help me get pumped on life. It’s not much, or that ground-breaking by any means, but here’s what I got.
1. Dump the dummy that’s been dragging you along for too long – you don’t need him. He sucks and your friends don’t like him anyways. To make this easier, you’ll need another man to get excited about. If you don’t have anyone lined up, make some eyes at the bar tonight. Seriously, it’s surprising how well and easy this method works. Just don’t stare too long or lip your lips or wink or anything creepy like that.
2. Bliss-out your summer playlist – Refresh your tunes to make your summer feel new. Add some super blissed out electronic music that’s guaranteed to make you bop around like that first time you heard Spice Girls. You’ll also want some serious girl power swag like bikini kill or le tigre. I just got myself a soundcloud account so if you’d like, you can follow me as I blast my stream with the most hyper-happy tracks I can find.
3. Host a homegirls night – It may be hard when all your friends are all wified up, but do it. Grab some wine, make some cookies, have some cheese out. Play clueless while you pump some 90s jock jams. Reminisce, talk trash, and make it awesome.
4. Update that wardrobe, girlfriend – Winter’s over and you may be broke, but hanging out in those ratty black leggings and old sweatshirts isn’t doing anything for your mindset. There’s no better way to make the transition than by spending an afternoon at the thrift store and finding the perfect cutoffs that make your booty look like Beyonce’s. Or at least sort of like Beyonce’s. We can always dream big, right?
5. Soak it up – The rays, the weather, the positive vibes that are leaking out of everyone’s brains as they enjoy the beautiful weather outside. Take a minute to think about how funny your friends are. High five a stranger, Pet a dog, smoke some  Lay on the grass and breathe. Ride the chill wave as long as possible
As for this sandwich, well let’s just think of it as the Girl-Power // Clueless version of grilled cheese. Tai is the tuna salad that gets a makeover from Cher and Dionne, who are represented by the sweet, buttery, and nutty gruyere and swiss combo. The everything bread is Josh, Travis, and Murray, you know all the good guys from the movie. The cherry peppers are Christian, for a little pop of unexpected flavor and the butter is ummmmmm…..you.

Live the dream with these:

-1/3 cup of Wisconsin gruyere and swiss, shredded
-2 slices of EVERYTHING seed bread
-1 tbs of cherry peppers
-2 pats of salted butter
-1/3 cup of tuna salad (recipe below)
-1/2 jar of tonnino yellowfin tuna filets
-1 tbs EMPIRE mayo’s black garlic mayo
-1 tsp red onion, finely chopped
-1 tsp celery, finely chopped
-salt and pepper to taste
-combine and season to taste


Give a little kiss to your gruyere and swiss before you pile half of it onto one slice of bread.
It’s such a great combo; nutty, slightly sweet, and oh so buttery. The best part about combining these two lactaid lovers is that they melt perfectly to create the ultimate union of melted cheesiness. LIke I said before, this combo is like the Cher and Di of Beverly Hills.
 Now it’s tuna salad time. Like Tai, tuna salad doesn’t look so great on the outside. It actually looks totally disgusting, but it’s full of delicious flavors and fun. Wait, can tuna salad be fun? Totally.
Anyways, scoop on your tuna salad and make it so that it’s evenly distributed.
Now to make things a little more exciting, add some cherry peppers. These are sweet, spicy, and they really pop against the tuna salad. It sort of wakes you up, just like Christian did to Cher when she realized that not all guys are immature assholes. Sure he was totally gay, but if she didn’t have him she would have never fallen in love with Josh and we would have all cried and thought the movie sucked.
Now get your life together and add the rest of the cheese and the top piece of bread. You’re almost there! Self-improvement – grilled cheese style!
Butter your bread and heat your burner to medium. Place your creation in the middle and watch it evolve into a beautiful toasty grilled cheese! See any metaphors here?
Once it finishes cooking, take it off the burner and let it sit for a minute. Slice it down the middle, examine it for it’s awesomeness, take it all in and get pumped that you get to eat this crazy thing.
I know this post might’ve sounded a little too cosmo’d out and self-helpy, especially coming from me, but seriously, it’s time to get hyped up about life. Force yourself to make moves that’ll make you excited. The results are too cool not to.

The “Love in Ya Mouth” – Gorgonzola, Gruyere, Brussels Sprouts, and Sunny Side Egg Grilled Cheese

brussels sprouts, bacon and egg grilled cheese

It’s here! Summer is here! And so is my I-don’t-give-a-shit-I-just-wanna-have-fun attitude. It feels so refreshing – so free. No more am i dragged down by thirty layers of sweaters, cardigans, and whatever else isn’t dirty or am I waist deep in itchy, too-tight wool socks. Now my shockingly white thighs (let’s get real – they’re almost translucent at this point) are making a comeback in the shortest shorts i can find and I’ve decided that I’m also ditching the bra this summer because who needs one when the size your boobs couldn’t even pass as a cornhole beanbag. Wait, I take that back. I will only wear the funnest color bras I can find… and that’s a promise. Oh, and how could I forget the most exciting part? My cast is off and I can almost high five my friends, without passing out from pain or screaming in their faces for forgetting that my wrist is totally junked up. My roommates are pretty happy about that though too. I think it’s mostly because I can do the dishes again. But that’s neither here nor there – it’s all about shedding layers, showing some skin, living in the moment, sluttin’ it up, and having the best summer EVER!

But on the other hand, while I flick off the last few months with a blank stare in my eye and a toothy grin on my face, there is one part of winter that I’ll miss and it has to do with cooking… DUHHH. In Brooklyn, it’s just too dang hot to make anything that requires a flame. Without central AC or the money to buy a window unit, my once fully functioning kitchen transitions from being a place of extreme happiness to a beacon of sweat, tears, and nostalgia. For the next few months, I say goodbye to all the roasted vegetables that I once loved and say hello to a bunch of potato chips boring salads that require no heat whatsoever. So as a sendoff to winter, here is one last grilled cheese that I won’t be able to make for another 6 months.

Crispy bits of pancetta add porky goodness to pan-fried brussels sprouts, and the combination of nutty gruyere, buttery gorgonzola, and creamy egg yolk combine to make one sandwich that will make you enter a wet t-shirt contest. Or whatever.

You have about 1 week left to make this, so here’s what you’ll need.

-1 tbs gorgonzola, crumbled
-1.5 tbs gruyere, shredded
-a few brussels sprouts cooked in pancetta grease
(I’ll explain what I did below)
-2 slices of La Brea Sourdough
-2 pats of salted butter

Lay down the law with some creamy gorgonzola. I love this cheese but it’s definitely not something you want to be gobbling down at the beach or anything. It’s rich, creamy, decadent, and doesn’t belong anywhere near a 2 piece.

Now give a kiss goodbye to brussels sprouts. They sure had one hell of a presence this winter. And I’m not even talking about that one time at the bar a few weeks ago. Thank god that instagram picture gotten taken down.

To make them, fry up 1-2 tablespoons of finely chopped pancetta for a few minutes until they start to crisp up and release their grease. Then chop the stem off your sprouts and slice ’em in half. Set them in your pan and let them sizzle in pork fat until they’re cooked through. Salt and pepper to taste. Then throw ’em on your mother effin grilled cheese sandwich.

Here comes the fun part. Gently place a fried egg on top of it all and get excited because the next step is real fun. Like reallllly fun.

Now this part can be super cathartic and symbolic if you let it. Begin by sprinkling some gruyere on top of the egg and then smash it with the other peice. Watch as the runny yellow richness leaks down your sandwich and think about it whichever way you’d like. Maybe you just imaged smashing some losers face that didn’t call you back last week or maybe you can associate the yolky, drippy streams with the tears of joy that poured out of your eyes once you found that perfect high wasted bathing suit yesterday.

Now butter your bread and place the sandwich in a skillet. Cook over medium heat until you’re sick of waiting. I mean, cook over medium heat until the crust is all golden and brown and the cheese has started to ooze out the sides. Flip, repeat.

Let it sit for a moment so the cheese and all the insides can tighten up and don’t spill out all over the place like that emotional outburst that got all messy last time you were with your parents too long.

brussels sprouts, bacon and egg grilled cheese

So if we’d all take a moment of silence and if you’d join me in a celebratory beauty-pagent-style wave goodbye, we can all say peace out to our good buddy brussels sprouts. And if you’re one of the fortunate peeps that has anything but a steaming hot kitchen, please just keep your thoughts to yourself… I can’t handle it at this point. I’m weeping. Ok, bye. *sniff*



Fondue Me – Deconstructed Grilled Cheese with Gruyere, Emmentaler and Apple Cider

Roses are red
Violets are blue
I might just be falling apart 
but this recipe is for you!
Grilled cheese is rad
And so are you!

So I’m sort of sick right now and I really can’t think of any funny jokes to write about how I’m going to spend tomorrow. Maybe all the sudafed and mucinex that I’ve taken has gone straight to my dome and blocked all of my ridiculousness (and grammatical skillz), but just to fill you in, I’m spending another Valentine’s Day single. Now this doesn’t mean that I’ll be binge eating chocolate and taking shots of vodka while blaring Fleetwood Mac all alone again, because this time I’ll be at work and can enjoy all the Mast Brothers chocolate i want, with my other single co-workers, without feeling a lick of pity. I hope. I mean…who knows? All the single ladies of Depanneur are scheduled to work tomorrow night so it might just turn into some weird, ridiculous sob fest where we talk a little too much about Ryan Gosling, gossip about our neighborhood crushes, and gorge ourselves on brillat-savarin. That actually sounds pretty fun now that I think about it. Or maybe I’ll be so doped up on medicine that I’ll start hallucinating and hide in the cheese case to scare oncoming lovers. Or maybe…Ok, enough of the possibilities for tomorrow. I’m sure you can imagine some weird things that I might get myself into but I’ll get to the food. That’s why you came here in the first place, right?

And because I’m metaphorically falling apart, I thought this would be an appropriate time to do a deconstructed grilled cheese. I know, i know, it’s not really a grilled cheese but it’s got all the goodness that makes up GC; toasted bread, delicious fillings, and of course, melted, gooey delicious cheese.

Here’s what you’ll need if you have someone special or you don’t mind having a shit ton of cheese to eat by your lonesome.

-1/2 pound of gruyere, shredded
-1/2 pound of emmentaler, shredded
-1 cup of hard apple cider
-2 tbsp of cornstarch
-1 tsp of mustard
-1 tsp of worcestershire
-sea salt to taste
-olive oil toasted baguette rounds
bacon wrapped dates
braised brussels sprouts
-and if you want to get really creative, take a heart shaped cookie cutter to some cranberry and nut bread… oh yes, it’s delicious toasted and then  dipped in cheese

So to begin, make sure to get all your dippers together. To make what I did, just click the little links above or pair with whatever you’d like.

Then pour your cheese in a big ole bowl. The biggest bowl you can find!

FYI, that first paragraph took me two hours to write. I felt super unfunny and exhausted but now I’m starting to feel super loopy and a bit nutty. I THINK I MIGHT BE GOING STIR CRAZY!

Then toss it with some cornstarch…

(I wanted to put something completely inappropriate here: “Then toss ***** *****” but that’s just absurd and probably not a good idea. So asterisks it is!)

…So that each piece is lightly coated. This will help keep the cheese from getting all stringy and clumpy when it’s in your fondue pot later on. Because that texture ain’t sexy! And because no one wants to be hand-fed some gross, gnarled string cheese. This isn’t bagged lunch, ya know.
Meanwhile, bring your hard apple cider to a baby boil. I bought this really delicious one that we sell at the shop called JK Scrumpy’s Hard Cider, and no I’m not joking that’s the actual name, and I’m not gonna lie but I drank the rest of it and got pretty tipsy at 10 o’clock in the morning last Friday when I did this photoshoot. 
Oh! and in case you didn’t know, a baby boil is when there are just teeny tiny bubbles at the bottom of your pan. I guess the correct term would be simmer but I prefer baby boil cause it’s way cooler. 
Let the apple cider baby boil for about five minutes. It won’t really reduce that much but you just should, at least that’s what I read in the recipe that I adapted this from. I should probably give credit to that so here ya go… Thanks bon app.

Then handful by handful, add in your cheese and stir each time until it’s completely melted. Do not, i repeat, do not eat the cheese handful by handful. You will not have a sexy Valentine’s. It’ll just clog you up! GROSS MACKENZIE!

Now it’s time to flavor-it-up! Add the mustard and worshirreelkjlkjf or however you spell it. That is truly one word i cannot say. Along with thousandths. Can’t say that one either.

Anyways! Stir in those things and season with salt… and pepper if you choose. Pepper makes me sneeze uncontrollably.

Then give it one last stir, just to make sure that it’s all silky and smooth. You can totally dip lots of things in it to make sure that it tastes good at this point. Just to make sure, ya know? You don’t want your special someone to be grossed out by one of the things you’ve thought to pair it with. So it just makes sense to try them all before you serve it! And you won’t look like a ravaged scavenger that hasn’t been fed for days when you present your amazing vat of cheesiness.

Now that’s the end! All you have to do is pour it in your fondue pot and light a little candy underneath and put your dippy items around it. Do it pretty or you’ll get the wire hanger!

Then shove it in your lovers face so that they can truely see that you are the most amazing Valentine that they’ve ever had and they’re incredibly fortunate to have you! Whisper in a sexy voice “eat this baby”  and shove a pokey stick in a brussels sprout or mini hot dog (why didn’t I think of that before?!) and force feed them until it’s all gone. Meanwhile, be sure to remove that crazy smirk and demon eyes from your face and stop huffing with excitement. You’ve got them, for now.

Love you all a lot,