The secret to the ultimate cheese toastie? Stovetop, butter and TWO types of cheese.
In the event of an emergency, it is acceptable to toast bread, top with cheese and pop it under the grill. But if you want to experience a cheese toastie in all its glory, give the grill a miss and use a frying pan instead.
Slather both sides of the bread with butter. And use two types of cheese – one for flavour, the other for its melting qualities.
When you bite through the golden crust into the warm bread then hit that oozy, molten cheese... it's truly one of the greatest eating experiences ever.
Grilled cheese, done right
A grilled cheese will never win any awards in the diet department. So if you're going to indulge, do it right!
- 2 slices fresh sourdough, sliced 1.3–1.5cm thick
- 20–30g salted butter
- 30–40g vintage cheddar cheese, freshly grated (or other melting cheese of choice)
- 30g mozzarella, freshly grated
- Slather both sides of bread with the butter.
- Heat a heavy-based skillet or frying pan over medium heat. Place bread in the skillet and lightly toast for 45 seconds to warm it through and create a light crust. This gives the cheese a head start.
- Flip one slice of bread, then pile on the cheddar cheese followed by the mozzarella. Place the other slice of bread on top, with the hot toasted side in contact with the cheese.
- Cook for 3 minutes or until the bread is golden and crisp. Press down lightly with a spatula to encourage evening browning. If it's browning too quickly, remove skillet from the hob and adjust the heat.
- Turn the sandwich over, and cook the other side for 3 minutes or until the bread is golden and the cheese is melted.
- Transfer to cutting board. Slice in half. Admire cheese pull. Devour.
- The ratio of bread to cheese matters. If the bread is too thin, you'll end up with a wimpy, floppy toastie. Too thick, and there's just too much bread – you will feel robbed of cheese. (Oh, and the bread burns before the cheese melts.) Use a ruler if you must, to slice accurately!
- The type of bread also matters. Pedestrian sandwich bread is too soft – again, you'll end up with a wimpy cheese toastie. You need something with enough structure that can hold up to the ooze, but not so dense that it's an effort to chew through. Fresh sourdough is an excellent option. The crumb is soft enough so it melds well with the cheese, but firm enough to not get squished into oblivion.
- Avoid really holey sourdough slices. Nobody wants their cheese to ooze out of bread holes!
- The exact amount of butter and cheese will depend on the size of the bread slice. Pile on as much cheese as you want/can fit. Some cheese overflow is encouraged – it turns golden and crusty, and it's like winning a little grilled cheese lottery.