These Pizza Margherita Grilled Cheeses combine all your favorite ingredients from a classic pizza Margherita and stuff them in between two slices of bread Grilled cheese month. It’s a thing.
April is also deemed the month of the BLT sandwich, soft pretzels, soy foods (don’t even ask) and a personal favorite garlic. But for some reason grilled cheese month is the only thing that seems to be shouted from the Internet rooftops.
While my waistline couldn’t tolerate 30 whole days of grilled cheese sandwiches, my Facebook feed has been so inundated with pictures of gooey cheese sliding out of crispy, buttered slices of bread, I just had to hop on the bandwagon. And let me tell you friends, the grilled cheese bandwagon is a very, very good place to be.
Margherita pizza has been on my mind since Kev and I tried out a “certified Neapolitan” pizza place relatively new to Kansas City last week. After a scant wine pour which took me four conservative sips to finish, a price tag of $18 for a 10-inch personal pizza and spotty service, I wasn’t exactly banking on loving the pizza enough to warrant a second visit. As I followed our waiter, pie in hand, with my eyes, making his way from the exposed kitchen to our table, and witnessed up close just how tiny this pie actually was, I became even more skeptical it would live up to the hype I’d created in my head.
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 large garlic clove, minced
2 tsp. tomato paste
14.5 ounces fire-roasted canned tomatoes
¼ teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon sugar
16 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
1 cup basil leaves
8 slices sourdough bread
3 tablespoons butter, melted
In a small sauce pan, heat olive oil and garlic over a medium heat. Saute until softened, about 1 minute.
Add tomato paste, stir to combine. Cook for one minute.
Add tomatoes, salt and sugar, whisk until tomato paste is fully incorporated.Simmer for 8-10 minutes until thickened. Set aside.
Heat a large cast-iron skillet or griddle to a medium heat.
Spread about 2 tablespoons of sauce on each slice of bread.
Top with four ounces of slices of cheese. Top with 4-5 leaves of basil.
Drizzle with a little bit of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
Place the other two pieces of bread, sauce side down on cheese and basil. Brush tops with butter. Season with a bit of salt and pepper.
Place sandwich butter-side down in a skillet heat to medium (work in batches if needed), brush other side with butter. Cook until golden brown and crispy on each side and the cheese is melted.
(If you are having a hard time getting the cheese to melt, pop into a 350 degree oven for a few minutes.