I recently visited one of my best friends in DC for a girls weekend. Not only was it great to catch up, but I had a lot of good meals while I was there. A new foodie trend is the gourmet grilled cheese sandwich. Several grilled cheese themed restaurants have popped up since I last lived in DC and since GCDC (Grilled Cheese District Columbia = GCDC) is within walking distance from the White House, we decided to venture over there for lunch after the WH Garden Tour. It was AMAZING. The hot, gooey grilled cheese hit the spot. You had a choice between tator tots and tomato soup for your side and while everyone at our table went for the tots, I was a traditionalist and went with the classic tomato soup.
Now I know you’re thinking, ‘Really, you’re going to tell me how to make a grilled cheese? Come on. It’s the easiest meal ever,’ but simplicity can be perfected. Not only have I made more grilled cheeses at home since my GCDC experience, but I also had one when I was in Cleveland and remembered how good a grilled cheese can be.
My GCDC grilled cheese had mushrooms and truffle oil, but my favorite grilled cheese combination is to use really good cheese and sundried tomato on wheat. Feel free to experiment – get the best and freshest ingredients you can and your grilled cheese will be a little more sophisticated than the Kraft singles version.
Here’s my version and I used a little truffle oil sample from my Try the World box. Spray your pan with nonstick cooking spray (and/or truffle oil if you have it) and butter both sides of the bread. Next add your cheese (I went with two slices because life is short). Add sundried tomato slices or slices of tomato. Nothing beats a summer tomato, but it will get juicy in your grilled cheese as it grills. Flip when lightly brown and enjoy.
Other ideas if you’re feeling adventurous: bacon, pesto, goat cheese, mozzarella, roasted red peppers, avocado, ricotta, etc. Food Network also has a list of 50 grilled cheese sandwiches if you need more inspiration.
Now for the perfect complement to any grilled cheese: homemade tomato soup. If you don’t have a Vitamix, you can use any blender you have.
6 INGREDIENT VITAMIX TOMATO SOUP
Recipe via Foodie with Family
- ½ of a small yellow or white onion
- 1 celery stalk
- A few carrots
- 1 garlic clove, peeled
- 1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes in juice
- 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes with Italian Herbs
I’ve also included photos from my trip. My friend works on the Hill and was able to acquire WH Garden Tour tickets for us, which was a treat. We also went to Virginia and explored Burnside Farm (to pick our own tulips) and a winery on my last day.