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Asparagus Pesto Grilled Cheese For Springtime Carby Goodness

Is there a more perfect combination than butter, bread, and melty cheese? Many people associate grilled cheese with cold weather. And I agree that it’s THE comfort food for chilly nights. The opportunity to curl up with a toasty grilled cheese, a bowl of tomato soup, a brown ale (or maybe a stout), and a scary movie: you’ve just described my ideal evening. There are so many wonderful variations on grilled cheese. Keep it simple and old-school with Kraft Singles and Wonder Bread. Jazz it up by mixing fancy cheeses and fresh-baked bread. Add apple butter or fruit preserves for a sweet/savory combo. With fresh asparagus starting to pop up, and cool mornings still lingering, why limit yourself? Food this good is so simple to make and can be enjoyed at any time. In honor of National Grilled Cheese Day, we’ve whipped up this asparagus pesto grilled cheese, an excellent springtime sandwich. 

This asparagus pesto grilled cheese uses melty mozzarella and rich Fontina cheese.  The addition of asparagus pesto gives an otherwise heavy grilled cheese a vibrant burst of flavor and color, perfect for spring. Asparagus is one of our favorite in-season vegetables, and there are endless things you can create. Making it into a pesto really showcases its bright green color while tempering its strong flavor. This pesto recipe makes quite a lot, so you’ll have some left over. Toss it into pasta, or mix it with some shredded chicken for a salad. It freezes well if you want to save it for later. 

Our asparagus pesto grilled cheese is a quick weeknight option for a delicious spring meal. Make it tonight and let us know what you think!

Asparagus Pesto Grilled Cheese

Asparagus Pesto Grilled Cheese

Yield: 2 sandwiches
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 7 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes

A springtime twist on a carby classic.

Ingredients

Asparagus Pesto

  • 1 pound asparagus, woody ends snapped off and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • ⅓ cup pine nuts
  • ⅓ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Juice from one lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • ⅓ cup olive oil

Grilled Cheese

  • 4 slices good bread (I used sourdough)
  • 4 ounces mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 2 ounces Fontina cheese, grated
  • 4 tablespoons asparagus pesto
  • 1 tablespoon salted butter

Instructions

Asparagus Pesto

Start by blanching the asparagus. Drop the pieces into boiling water and let them cook for two minutes. Then immediately remove the asparagus using a slotted spoon and place the pieces in an ice water bath to cool quickly. 

Add asparagus to a food processor along with remaining ingredients, except for the olive oil. Pulse a few times until everything is chopped finely and well-combined. Then, while the food processor is running, slowly pour in the olive oil until it is fully incorporated and continue to process for about 30 seconds, until you have a smooth pesto.

Grilled Cheese

Lay two pieces of bread flat on a plate, then spread a layer of pesto on each slice. Divide the shredded fontina evenly over the two slices, and then do the same for the sliced mozzarella. Cover each sandwich with the second slice of bread, then butter each side. Cook on a skillet over medium heat, flipping halfway through, until bread is golden brown and cheese is melted (about seven minutes total). Cut in half and serve. 

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