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National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day

National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day

Crispy bread and melted cheese. How can something that tastes so good be this simple? Welcome to National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day on April 12!

What’s the secret?

We asked Aaron Christenson, the owner of a small Central Oregon restaurant that won a recent readers’ poll in the categories of “Best Kids Menu” and “Best Family Restaurant.”

His response?

“A perfect grilled cheese has to have a super crispy exterior, brushed with garlic oil. Lots of melty cheese in the center. Thick-cut, handmade bread is a must!”

And there you have it.

Now get grilling.

Food historians and experts tell us that cultures around the world have been enjoying cheese on bread since ancient times. The modern grilled cheese sandwich that we enjoy today originated in the 1920s.

While we don’t know the creator of grilled cheese sandwiches, we owe its success to Otto Frederick Rohwedder, who invented the bread slicer during the Industrial Revolution. His invention made dividing bread into even slices easier and more affordable. Luckily, shortly before the bread slicer was perfected, James L. Kraft created processed cheese. This meant that cheese could be transported over long distances and not spoil. Each significant in their own way, both inventions revolutionized sandwiches forever!

So who was the genius behind grilling the combination of cheese and bread to create the grilled cheese sandwich? According to government-issued cookbooks, surprisingly it is the American Navy who thought of it or, at the very least, were the first to publish the recipe. Hundreds of “American cheese-filled sandwiches” were prepared by Navy chefs for military personnel during World War II.

The term ‘grilled cheese’ was coined in the 1960s when the second slice of bread was added to the top of grilled cheese. Other popular names were cheese toasty and toasted cheese sandwiches.

1.Make a sandwich
There is no better way to celebrate National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day than by getting your grilled cheese on. Bread, butter, cheese, go!

2.Fondue it
Cut some grilled cheese sandwiches into cute little triangles and put them on a warm platter next to a plate of “finger food” veggies for perfect party munchies. You could even set up a pot of cheese fondue and a platter of toasted bread so everyone makes their own melty cheese sandwiches at the table.

3.Make a romantic meal for two
Grill your significant other’s favorite cheese sandwich for a warm and gooey surprise romantic dinner. Give yourself points for picking the right wine (or craft beer) to pair with it.

A. Ultimate comfort food
Grilled cheese sandwiches remind us of having our moms make us grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch; then, being a little older and craving something warm, and deciding that grilled cheese counts as cooking.

B. They go well with everything
Grilled cheese and tomato soup is the most classic combination, but this sandwich seems to go well with salad, and milkshakes — the salty sandwich makes any meal better.

C. They offer an opportunity to explore the cheese case
However, it is set up – by texture, by country, by variety – that cheese case is your friend. Go through it systematically and make cheese combinations that will elevate your grilled cheese experience.


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