Whiskey Oak Smoked Cheddar Grilled Cheese with Mushrooms, Smoked Streaky Bacon & Aioli
2 x slices of sourdough bread about a finger's width in thickness and hand's length in area (TIP: we recommend the organic sourdough from Mark's Bread)
1 x generous handful of smoked cheddar (TIP: if you're the DYI type, it's relatively easy and inexpensive to create your own smoking system to get a big smokey flavor. No seriously, it's well worth it. Plus you can use it to smoke fish, meats, veg, oils, anything really. Or if you just want to get on with making your sandwich, you can buy smoked cheese. But make sure you get real smoked cheese and not the artificially flavored stuff)
2 x slices of smoked streaky bacon (TIP: support your local butcher)
3 x mushrooms, sliced and sautéed (TIP: see what varieties your produce shop has to offer)
1 x Tablespoon salted butter (TIP: make your own butter using double cream and sea salt flakes. It makes a difference. And it's even easier than building your own smokehouse)
1 x Tablespoon aioli (TIP: again, make it yourself. You can do it, add fresh chives for extra flavour)
You are about to make a Grilled Cheese Sandwich, NOT, for the love of all that is holy, a "toastie" (nb: we at Wriggle are very proud of the British institution that is the Toastie, you’ve not lived until you chuck half a can of beans in a cheese toastie and burn your mouth). So whatever preconceptions you may have about what you think you're about to embark on, throw them out the window along with that horrid electric sandwich press (Careful now, Charlie loves her toastie maker and will fight you - Wriggle) you were considering using to sabotage the delightful sandwich that awaits you.
1. Preheat a frying pan or griddle on high. Try to get the temperature up to 250ºC. If your cooking surface isn't hot enough you'll create a limp sogwich and will have to live out the rest of your day, and possibly life, in shameful memory of what you've done.
2. Butter one side of each slice of bread. Bare in mind you're not some fast-talking NYC deli-guy swiping a heavy schmear on a poppyseed bagel. You're [likely] British and humble, and so let you're buttering reflect who you are. Now, with a steady hand, allow a modest spread of butter to gently and methodically glide across your bread.
3. Non-buttered side up, evenly place 3/4 handful of cheese onto one slice. Layer on mushrooms and [cooked] bacon, and top with remaining cheese, effectively creating a cheese sandwich within your cheese sandwich. Add aioli at this stage if desired.
4. Place the other slice of bread, butter side up, onto the... well, the sandwich. At this point it should look sandwichy, like a sandwich would look if you were trying to make a sandwich. Which you are.
5. Jig if you're bubbling with nervous anticipation, if you must.
6. Put the sandwich directly onto the hot cooking surface. Flip after 2 minutes or once the edges become crisp and golden brown. Repeat on the other side.
7. There you have it; a Grilled Cheese Sandwich. Enjoy and repeat
Can't be bothered? Find For Mice and Men and the following locations
- Thursday May 18: Temple Quay Lunch Market, BS1 6DG | 12 - 2pm
- Friday May 19: Finzels Reach Lunch Market, BS1 6BX | 12 - 2pm
- Saturday May 20: Harbourside Market, BS1 4DJ | 11 - 4pm
- Sunday May 21: Harbourside Market | 11 - 4pm
- Temple Quay nearly every Thursday, Finzels Reach on Fridays, and Harbourside on weekends unless otherwise noted on our social media.