Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Grilled Cheese Social Holiday Gift Guide!

I've been thinking a lot about Christmas this week, mainly because it's in like two weeks and I haven't done any shopping yet AND because I need want a lot of new, awesome stuff. I'm not deprived in any sense, I mean, I work at a cheese shop and intern at Saveur magazine so I get a ton of awesome foodie stuff on the reg, but I am an American, so i always want MORE MORE MORE! And to be truthful, I don't know what Santa is going to think about my behavior year, because depending on how you look I've been naughty and nice, totally in a non-weird way, of course.

But to get some extra brownie points, I figured I should do something good and share with you an ultimate holiday gift guide for the Grilled Cheese obsessed. So there's two categories...1) that I'm cheesily posing by - which are the things that I absolutely swear by and couldn't be a grilled cheese gal without, and 2) things that I'm hoping someone puts under my Christmas tree.

So happy holidays everyone!

 Products I swear by



1. Ultra-thin ultra-excellent OXO silicone turners

 Let's get it straight, you need one of these. They're super thin, really flexible and they're heat resistant so it won't get really hot and burn the hell out of your hand. It can slide right up underneath one of your grilled cheese sandwiches without pushing it to the other side of the pan, and for that, I love it.

Want one? Click here!



2. Super serious Calphalon double-burner griddle pan

Now this isn't for everyone, but if you've got a family or a bunch of friends that like to mooch off of your creations, then this is totes for you. It's super big and takes over two burners so you've got about three times the grill space. I couldn't live without mine and my grilled cheese parties would be a bust without it, so yeah, I dig it.

 Want one? Click here!


This grater has no label at all, WTF?!

3. The most functional grater in the world

I don't know if you can tell what this thing is, but it's a grater that comes with a multitude of different size grater sheets. You basically get about three different sheets and snap them onto a base. It comes with a little plastic storage case so you can keep them all together when you're not using it. I like it because I can get so many different size shreds out of it, and that's important in my world.

Want a similar one? Click here!
 

4. Heavy-ass press

I am not very strong and sort of lazy, so that's why I love having a heavy ass cast-iron press. I just set it on a super-hot burner and let it heat up for a minute and then place it right on top of my sammiches. It leaves nice little grill marks and it makes giant sandwiches more mouth accessible so you can pack a ton of stuff into your GCs.

Want one? Click here!

 

5. Sharp and sleek Henckels knives

I don't know a ton about knives but I know the ones that my uncle gave me are totally rad. They're sharp, strong, and cut like Patrick Bateman from American Psycho would have loved. Sorry that's a little macabre but you get what I'm saying. They can cut through GC's without smushing all the goodies out and I couldn't do my photo shoots wihtout 'em.

Want one? Click here!


6. Mildly embarrassing Rachel Ray cutting board

I'm just gonna say it. I have a love/hate relationship with Rachel Ray. She does some awesome stuff as a human, but I just can't get into her shows. I can, however, get really into how much I love this cutting board that comes with a bunch of bacteria-resistant plastic covers. I've had mine for about five years and it's still in perfect condition, and I use mine a lot, like a lot a lot.

Want one? They don't make it anymore:( but here's a similar one


7. Super fatty Plugra Butter

I don't think I've ever talked about what brand of butter I use, but I swear by Plugra. It's got a higher fat content than normal butter, about 85% I believe, so it makes a super nice, crispy crust and it's also a cultured butter so it has a more buttery taste which is oh-so-freaking-good! Salted or not, it's the only stuff I buy these days.

Want one? Click here!

 8. The Filling Station Salt

My roommate turned me onto The Filling Station last Christmas as a gift and I can't get enough. They have a little shop in the Chelsea Market and I could spend my whole life in there, licking salt and taking mini-shots of fruity olive oils and fancy balsamic vinegars. I go through this stuff way too quickly, so I'm always trying new flavors. Right now, I'm on black truffle salt and Thai ginger salt. I LOVE salt.

Want one? Click here!


Things that I don't have that I need BADLY!







1. OMG SO HIP Brooklyn cutting board

I have to have this. It is so cute and awesome and I love my neighborhood so much and AHHH! I can't get over it. It will hopefully appear in a photoshoot sometimes soon!



Want one, too? Click here!











2. Grilled Cheesus Press


Jesus's face in a grilled cheese? Could there be anything more Christmas than that? I don't even know what else to say.

Want one, too? Click here!




3. Cheese Paper

Cellaphane and tinfoil just don't work at preserving cheese. But this cheese paper does and it's super awesome. It keeps it fresher, and doesn't allow for extraneous flavors to seep into your ultra fancy fromages.


Want some, too? Click here!













4. Cheese Subscription

What's better than receiving awesome blocks of cheese each and every month right to your doorstep? The only thing that I can think of is if the cute guys from The Bedford Cheese shop would hand deliver it and give me a kiss on the mouth. It might be a little better that way, I guess.

Want one, too? Click here!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Cure-All

I think I figured it out guys. I need to date a butcher. A big strong, burly butcher with some seriously hot meat-hacking abilities. Ok, now I know that it might seem a little gross and/or extremely weird, but let me tell you what I mean. After seeing Tom Mylan, my fav celebrity butcher (and yes that's a thing), and about twenty other hot, beefy men (pun intended) from various meat shops around NYC compete against each other at Roberta's 2nd Annual Beerfest, I think I found what all the extremely tall, handsome, and manly men do...and that just so happens to be slaying meat for a living! 

While I was there, my mind was set on this new fantasy if you will. A cheese gal and a meat man? Could there be anything more perfect? Our friends would love to come to our dinner parties, we'd have the best of the best of our own speciality products at all times, and well, it would be like a fairytale made in foodie heaven. At least for me. 

So at this party, I might have gotten a little too intoxicated off of my new romantic endeavor the 12 bud heavies that I drank, and I woke up with quite the heartache that none of them even talked to me headache. I needed a hangover meal; something greasy, but at the same time, something bright and full of nutrients to perk me up. And you probably guessed it, but a grilled cheese was what came to mind. With arugula pesto, scrambled eggs, and some tangy goat cheese, all grilled between two buttery pieces of multigrain bread, it sounded just about perfect. And it was. Even though there was no hot butcher to share it with. He probably could have even contributed some local bacon or something. Frick.



Here's whatcha'll need





 Ingredients:

- 2 slices of multigrain bread
- 1 egg, scrambled
- 2 pats of salted butter
- 1/3 cup of crumbled goat cheese
- 1 tbsp of arugula pesto (recipe courtesy of
   my other job at Saveur.com)









To begin, roll out of bed. Don't brush your teeth. Grab ingredients out of fridge and sprinkle half of the crumbled goat cheese onto one slice of bread.

I used a nice Capricho De Cabra from Spain. It's a super tangy, lemony, fresh goats milk cheese that melts really nicely without getting all gritty and gross like some do. Totes recommend it and probably eat too much of it, but that's another story.


Next you'll want to scramble one egg up, really quick, and add it right on top of that goat cheese-d up bread. Use fresh eggs if you've got them.

My dream butcher boyfriend probably has a super-sweet fresh egg connection. //Facepalm//


And add some of that arugula pesto.

I wouldn't recommend making it when you're hungover because the sound of the food processes made me want to kill myself. Maybe make it before the weekend happens so you can act like a pro when/if you've got a certain someone to entertain one morning.*

*I am not implying that anyone is a slut here, ok?


Then sprinkle on the remaining goat cheese and nibble on whatever's left over. You can even lick your fingers. I won't tell. I might have even done it myself, I was pretty bummed out that next morning.


 Place the top piece of bread on top along with a smear of butter. Don't lick the remaing butter, that's gross!


Turn your stove top to medium high and place this cure-all sandwich, butter-side down, into the pan. Add a dollop of butter to the other side and let it cook for about 4 minutes until it starts to get brown and toasty.


When it looks good enough on one side, flip it and repeat. The goat cheese melts super quickly so it's not really about waiting for the cheese to melt, it's more about waiting to get a nice crust on your bread.


After it's toasted on both sides, take it out of the pan, let it cool for a hot sec, and chow down.


So now that you probably know a little too much of what goes on in my head these days, at least you have the prospect of a new sandwich to keep you coming back to my blog.

Or if you're a butcher... call me. I'm single. 

Pair with a strong bloody mary, a couple advils, and some dark sunglasses and you'll be set. Until next time my darlings...

xoxo,

GCS