This guest post was written by Eric Solomon, a.k.a. my dad.
I have never been known as a culinary genius. In fact, as most of my friends know, I have never graduated from being able to boil water. In the four years I spent at school living alone, I had only one criterion for dinner: that it could be cooked, eaten, and cleaned up within the span of one hour. I was always thrilled with any recipe that was deemed both palatable and within my level of expertise.
So was the case with the grilled cheese sandwich. Certainly everyone loves this timeless and truly American comfort food. There are, in fact, a variety of techniques to create this dish. I grew up watching my mom rest a partially filled teapot on top of the grilling sandwich. I’m still not certain what purpose this served other than to make an extruded grilled cheese wafer.
My wife insists on the traditional grilling process. Although this does result in a very pleasing final product, it is quite time-consuming and requires more patience than I can typically muster. If I personally attempted this technique, I would be repeatedly checking the pan. Is it done yet? Is it done yet?
I have actually created a far better cooking technique (despite my family’s ridicule). For the first time, I will now share my recipe with the world.
- Toast two slices of white bread in the toaster.
- Put a slice of American cheese on one of the toast pieces and cook in the microwave oven for exactly five seconds.
- Quickly place the second piece of toast on top and viola! A grilled cheese sandwich.
Total elapsed cooking time is an amazing one minute and five seconds.
I am quite aware of how the grilled cheese purists will view this method. “It’s a travesty. It’s not really grilled. The bread will be ruined. Civilization will crumble!” Though all these accusations may be true, I would counter that they have missed the essential points.
First, I feel honored that in this high-tech age where speed is important, this low-tech middle age man has made such an important contribution toward this effort (no less revolutionary than Facebook or bubble tea). Secondly, the minuscule taste differences compared to the old archaic methods are not necessarily inferior. This change in the sandwich will likely be coveted over time like fast food hamburgers and French fries. Thirdly, if I am vilified for my non-traditional methods and forced to abandon them, then I will have no choice but to start cooking my only other time-tested recipe: Pop Tarts.