In exactly two weeks, I will be on my way to Denmark and Germany for World Masters Championship. The pressure of a big competition is mounting and I can feel it both mentally and physically. Comfort food is especially alluring right now but more importantly than ever, I have to eat healthy. How unfortunate. Because I’m experiencing the biggest craving for grilled cheese sandwiches right now.
Back in February when Race Day was merely a mark on the calendar, I indulged in a batch of homemade pimento cheese. I never even knew about this southern cheesy staple until a road trip last Christmas to South Carolina. Boyfriend and I took his parents out to Sesame Burgers & Beer and I discovered the deliciousness of sharp cheddar seasoned with pimento peppers, mayonnaise, garlic, and hot sauce. The cheese spread melted yieldingly onto the juicy burger patty and I was hooked.
Like most kids in North America, grilled cheese as I knew it is Kraft single between buttered slices of Wonder Bread. I loved the combination so much that I would even eat a non-grilled version happily. My taste has gotten a bit more discerning since but grilled cheese sandwich still tugs at my heartstring. Except now, I want good cheese and good bread and good butter.
Combining my love of grilled cheese sandwich and my recent fascination with pimento cheese, the logical conclusion as you see in the photos was obvious. For my pimento cheese, I used a recipe from The America's Test Kitchen Menu Cookbook. It was a classic mix of Maple Dale 5yr aged cheddar, pimento, mayonnaise, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, and Tabasco. I paired it with homemade Sour Cream Red Fife bread which I adapted from Dan Lepard's recipe. Unlike bland Kraft singles, this sandwich had a nice kick. The filling was not overly generous so I did not get that photogenic ooze factor. However, that was just the way I prefer my grilled cheese sandwiches. I do not want molten hot cheese squirting out to burn the roof of my mouth!
All of this is but a distant memory. For now, I need to buckle down and face the competition which I work so hard for. My heart pounds at the mere thought of picturing myself at the start line. The allure of comfort food has to wait.