Monday, February 4, 2019

Review: The Great Grilled Cheese Book by Eric Greenspan

The Great Grilled Cheese Book
by Eric Greenspan [641.84 Gre] 

For anyone used to the simplicity of a white bread, grilled cheese sandwich featuring either sliced processed cheese or Velveeta, the forty recipes in this gourmet cookbook, by chef Eric Greenspan, will throw you for a major loop.

Greenspan emphasizes using fresh, quality ingredients, preferably homemade if at all possible. So…in addition to the grilled cheese recipes, he includes many other side recipes — you can make your own American cheese, fruit jams, pickled vegetables, and exotic breads (cornbread, focaccia, etc. But — if you don’t want to do literally everything from scratch, Greenspan encourages you to experiment with store-bought ingredients — just use the best you can find.

The recipes themselves are quite exotic and perhaps a little outside of my culinary comfort zone. Greenspan breaks the book into 8 sections — 7 dealing with 7 different categories of cheese (the gooey-er the better!), and an 8th for “wild card” recipes. Here are just a few of the highly creative recipes included — I’ll list one for each chapter: American Cheese – “Bad Moon Rising” — Sriracha-infused American cheese on sourdough with friend eggs, arugula and bacon.; Mozzarella/Provolone – “Muffuletta” – Mozza and provolone on focaccia with olives, pickled carrots and tasso ham; Cheddar – “Johnny Apple Cheese” – Cheddar on sourdough with pastrami and apple mustard chutney; Blue – “Frenchie” – blue cheese on baguete with date marmalade and prosciutto; Bloomy and Washed Rinds – “Cherry Cheese Ball” – Camembert on challah with sour cherry marmalade and pistachios; Gouda, Gruyere and Swiss – “The Gobbler” – Gouda on pumpernickel with cranberry olive tapenade, roast turkey, green beans and friend shallots; Goat – “Elvis” – Goat cheese on white bread with peanut butter, banana and bacon; Wild Cards – “Mole Melt” – Cotija on wheat bread with chocolate mole mayonnaise, chorizo and black beans, and marinated red onion.
If you’re looking for simple comfort food, perhaps to accompany a nice bowl of tomato soup, this is not the book for you. But if you’re looking to take your grilled cheese up a notch, you may find the recipes and gorgeous photos in this volume to be an inspiration in your cooking.

[ publisher’s official The Great Grilled Cheese Book web site ] | [ official Eric Greenspan Twitter feed ]

Recommended by Scott C.
Bennett Martin Public Library

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