Much has been made of the grilled cheese sandwich in recent years. What my kids used to call "flat cheese," pre-sliced American, has been shoved aside in favor of Gruyere, aged cheddar, Havarti, goat cheese, smoked gouda and just about every curd variation you can think of. We've glorified the grilled cheese to the point of super-gilding the lily.
But it's summer.
Forget the grilling and dare to be simpler: Serve a cheese sandwich.
After all, the luxury of summer food is its simplicity. You just really don't have to do much to put together a great meal when you've got fresh corn, ripe tomatoes and baby greens on hand. Who says meals have to be hot anyway?
Recently, I served these for supper:
slices of good, fresh bread (I like the country French loaf made by Harmons, cut size 12 thickness)
pesto (early in the season, buy the stuff Tony Caputo makes)
lettuce or arugula leaves
really fresh mozzarella
Spread the bread with the pesto. Tear up the greens, slice the cheese and tomato and stack on the bread.
I also like these:
kalamata olive bread (again, I'm partial to Harmons)
fresh goat cheese, blended with fresh thyme leaves, a clove of garlic and a touch of olive oil in the processor. I like local cheese, like Shepherd's, for this, as opposed to an import.
sundried tomatoes, drained and sliced
A thick layer of goat cheese, sun dried tomatoes for some chew, and romaine for crunch.
By the way, Carlucci's Bakery makes a killer goat cheese sandwich.