This recipe for chips and guacamole grilled cheese sandwich
is from the book, “Grilled Cheese Please!”, by Laura Werlin
Author Laura Werlin notes:
In this recipe, tortilla chips are on the outside of the bread to give the sandwich its corn-like flavor and to give you the ability to enjoy all the flavors guacamole, bacon, cheeses, and corn chips all at once.
Cooks&Books&Recipes Editors’ Notes:
It was the tortilla-chip-crusted bread that got me. Mixing that with butter to spread on the outside of this guacamole grilled cheese sandwich is truly inspired. Chips & dip in a sandwich! But this is still simple to make. It’s just your basic grilled cheese — with jazzed-up butter, extra cheese flavors, bacon, and guacamole. You don’t even have to make the guacamole yourself: the recipe gives you permission to use the store-bought stuff. (We live in the Southwest, but yes, we confess to buying Holy Guacamole now and then.)
My first try at “gourmet” grilled cheese satisfied both my basics-only kid self and my slightly-more-sophisticated-tastes grown-up self. The goat cheese lent a distinct pungency to the more mellow Jack and cheddar cheeses, melding — and melting — smoothly into the smoky bacon and creamy-tangy guacamole. The tortilla-chip-crusted bread finished the bite with a salty crunch.
Uh-oh, I just spotted “Spinach, Egg, and Manchego.” Manchego is one of my favorite cheeses. That’s next. Wait, now I see “Burrata with Roasted Peppers and Arugula”? Burrata grilled cheese? Please!
Chips and Guacamole Grilled Cheese
Featured Recipe From: Grilled Cheese, Please!
Chef Deborah Schneider has spent a lot of time south of the border in Baja, Mexico. She now brings her Mexican cooking experience north to her Orange County restaurant, SO L Cocina. I adapted her guacamole recipe because of its lovely balance of flavors, which is often tricky to achieve when it comes to making this quintessential avocado dip.
Yield: 4 sandwiches
- 8 slices bacon
- 8 large tortilla chips (about 2 ounces)
- 4 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
- 8 slices sourdough bread
- ½ cup guacamole (recipe follows; or use purchased, preferably one with tomato in it)
- 2 tablespoons peeled, seeded, diced Roma tomato (see Note)
- 4 ounces Colby cheese, coarsely grated
- 4 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, coarsely grated
- 4 ounces goat cheese
Guacamole, Makes 1 cup
- 1 ripe Hass avocado
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice (from about 1 lime)
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons finely diced white onion
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
- ½ fresh serrano chile, minced (optional)
- 1 tablespoon cored, seeded, and diced Roma tomato
Line a plate with paper towels. In a large nonstick skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until very crisp. Drain the bacon on the paper towels.
Remove the bacon fat from the pan and wipe the pan with a paper towel, but do not wash it. Set aside.
To make the tortilla chip butter, put the chips in the bowl of a food processor and process until the texture is very fine, similar to sand.
Alternatively, place the chips in a sturdy plastic bag. Using a meat mallet or other heavy object, pound the chips until they are the texture of sand.
Put the butter in a medium bowl and add the ground chips. Using a fork, work the chips and and butter together until well mixed. The mixture will be somewhat stiff.
To assemble: Spread the butter mixture on one side of each slice of bread. Place 4 slices, butter-chip mixture side down, on your work surface. Spread 2 tablespoons of the guacamole on each slice of bread. Sprinkle the tomato on top of the guacamole. Follow with the colby and Monterey Jack cheeses. Dot with small pieces of the goat cheese. Finish by placing 2 bacon pieces on each sandwich. Top with the remaining bread slices, buttered side up.
For stovetop method: Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat for 2 minutes. Put the sandwiches into the pan, cover, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, until the undersides are golden brown. Watch carefully because the chips in the butter can burn easily. Turn the sandwiches, pressing each one firmly with a spatula to compress the filling slightly. Cover and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until the undersides are well browned. Turn the sandwiches once more, press firmly with the spatula again, cook for 1 minute, and remove from the pan. Let cool for 5 minutes. Cut in half and serve.
For sandwich maker method: Use your sandwich maker for this sandwich only if it has variable heat settings. Otherwise, it will cook too hot and burn the chips on the bread without melting the cheese. To use your sandwich maker, follow directions for assembly above. Cook according to manufacturer's instructions.
Note: There's no need to use the tomato if your guacamole already has tomato in it.
Split and pit the avocado, and mash the avocado flesh in a medium bowl with the lime juice and salt, using a potato masher or a fork. Do not use a blender or food processor. You want to keep the avocado slightly chunky, not make it soupy. Stir in the onion, cilantro, chile, and tomato. Let sit for about 15 minutes to allow the flavors to meld.
Note: This makes more than you need for the sandwiches. Serve the remaining guacamole with chips alongside.
© 2011 Laura Werlin
Reprinted with permission from Grilled Cheese, Please! 50 Scrumptiously Cheesy Recipes, by Laura Werlin (Andrews McMeel Publishing)