• Suzanne Yearley

For the Leftovers: Grilled Cheese for Lunch

September 9, 2018

Suzanne Yearley

Mozzarella, Basil, Tomato Grilled Cheese 

Cooking doesn’t have to be complicated to be memorable, and this, my favorite take on grilled cheese, proves just that. With some leftover challah, a few slices of fresh mozzarella, a tomato, a handful of fresh basil leaves, a pat of butter and a sprinkling of salt, you have the makings of a delicious meal.  I love to weigh down this double-height sandwich with a cast iron skillet (put a piece of parchment in between) while it cooks. The trick here is in not burning the bread so be extra watchful. You will be rewarded with a crispy, golden sandwich filled with creamy mozzarella and redolent of the taste of summer. Tomato soup not required! Enjoy…


4 slices of challah bread

a few slices of fresh mozzarella, thinly-sliced

1 ripe tomato, sliced through the equator, to make rounds

4-6 basil leaves, washed and dried thoroughly

kosher salt and black pepper to taste

1-2 tablespoons unsalted butter

a cast iron skillet or brick wrapped in foil, optional

one piece parchment if using the skillet


Put together the sandwiches: lay 2 of the bread slices on a cutting board. Top with the mozzarella. Follow with 2-3 basil leaves, the tomatoes, a generous spinkling of salt and pepper and one final slice of mozzarella. Top with the remaining bread slices.

Heat the butter in the skillet over medium heat. When the butter stops foaming, add the sandwiches to the pan, top with the parchment and skillet or brick, if using, and immediately turn the heat down to medium low. Cook the sandwiches for 1-3 minutes on this side or until golden brown, checking frequently and adjusting the heat as necessary to prevent burning. Flip and repeat on the other side until the cheese is melted. Remove from the skillet and serve immediately with a basil sprig for garnish, if desired.

Serves 2, generously.

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