Some may be too timid to tinker with a classic, but I think that when it comes to celebration National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day, there’s no reason to take half measures!

Today is National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day and few food holidays acknowledge a meal that sits so securely on the throne of the comfort food kingdom.  Grilled cheese is the first hot sandwich of our youth, and the complex contradiction of crunchy, toasted bread and gooey, molten cheese cemented our culinary preferences in an almost primal way.

The home tested recipe we indulge in on lazy Sundays or wintery afternoons is so easy its almost perfect in its simplicity.  Two slices of buttered bread with a layer sandwich cheese in the middle.  Kraft processed cheese, or any other cheese-like sheet, made it practically fault free and a few minutes in on a griddle or in a pan, flipping once to bronze both sides of bread, was as meditative as flower arranging for a Japanese tea ceremony.  A glass of cold milk (or a bowl of warm tomato soup) was the only accompaniment worthy of this stand alone meal.  A quick bite to get the cheese while it was warm and fluid and we were transported… and that is the way it always has been for grilled cheese sandwiches.

If they are going to have a national day of recognition, I wanted to concoct a version that brought this solid homestyle dish into a bold category, utilizing ingredients and cheeses not normally associated with this, but still true to the spirit of a culinary stand alone.  To that end I proudly present:  The 5 Layer Grilled Cheese Sandwich!


I used two breads for this sandwich:

  • Fresh challah for its softness and grill-ability
  • Rye for stability and flavor

The 5 cheeses I chose were:

  • Mushroom brie
  • Fontina
  • Leichtenshire Red
  • Red Dragon, a mustard and ale infused cheddar
  • Shopshire Blue

And I included three add on items:

  • Onions sauteed with port wine
  • Thick cut hickory-smoked bacon
  • Sliced tomato, seared

The only other ingredient I had was about three tablespoons of mayonnaise for browning the bread.

Check out the video for great tips on making this awesome sandwich!



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