Though it’s not fancy, I consider the sandwich one of my favorite categories of food. Still, there’s a subset of the sandwich family that, for me, eclipses even the burger. You can’t talk about sandwiches and not include an appreciation for the grilled cheese sandwich. Or at least I can’t. As the Saveur sandwich issue stated several years back, “Plans falter and empires collapse, the no-fail recipe fails. But you can pretty much take it on faith: Grilled cheese will not disappoint.” In fact, the very first sandwich I ever shared on this blog was a Prosciutto and Red Spinach Grilled Goat Cheese Sandwich. Since then there have been 54 sandwiches and this is the tenth grilled cheese sandwich: Grilled Meatloaf Sandwich with Cheddar, Bacon and Curry-Tomato Relish.
My grilled meatloaf version of a cheese toastie (as the Brits say) is a colossal example of a sandwich that does not disappoint. I was very careful in choosing the ingredients for this sandwich because I really wanted it to be a two-fisted wonder. I chose melted cheese, bacon, leftover meatloaf, and a curried-tomato condiment so flavorful it could double as a pasta sauce. This grilled meatloaf sandwich has a lot going on. So much so that it almost defies the grilled cheese subset to which I’ve assigned it.
Grilled Meatloaf Sandwich with Cheddar
Which got me thinking. What is a grilled cheese sandwich anyway? It’s a broad category because it can include a simple combination of cheeses oozing out of buttered sourdough, or a more robust panini-style sandwich requiring two hands to rustle. Either way, it’s a grilled cheese sandwich to me, and it remains a favorite. Probably because it was one of the first foods I ever learned to make all on my own. Once mastered, it’s easy to experiment with a grilled cheese sandwich, so I guess I have. New cheeses and new partners. I pretty quickly learned to look beyond Velveeta and try other cheeses. Swiss, mozzarella, gruyere– even brie, they all make a great grilled cheese. But it’s Cheddar that remains my favorite. I guess it has just the right amount of oomph for my palate. And believe me, this grilled meatloaf sandwich deserves a cheese with oomph. GREG