Don’t Forget the Tomato Soup

Is it Carl Jung’s theory of the collective unconscious at work that has so many publications trotting out articles on grilled cheese this week? No, it’s just National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Month.

New York Magazine covers the iconic American sandwich in both its print and blog versions. Each lists places to acquire a good grilled cheese, although the Underground Gourmet list is more complete, and mouth-watering, with inspiring descriptions like this one, from the blurb on ’wichcraft:

The thinking man’s grilled cheese: Fontina with black-trumpet mushrooms and white-truffle fondue on Pullman bread.

Over at the New York Times, Melissa Clark is “Taking Back a Childhood Favorite” (registration required). Apparently she only visits her friends with children so she can muscle in on their grilled cheeses at lunchtime. When a friend subs sautéed broccoli for gooey cheese, Clark is at first bereft. Then she realizes she can make her own damn sandwich.

It occurred to me that I don’t necessarily have to procreate or make play dates as an excuse to eat grilled cheese. Why not just make it at home for myself? Since the only finicky palate to appease is my own, I wouldn’t be tied to yellow cheese and white bread. And really, wouldn’t grilled cheese be just as good or even better when made with slightly more sophisticated, grown-up ingredients, like stinky cheese and grainy bread?

Why are the citizens of the Big Apple so into their grilled cheese? Maybe it’s because New Yorkers are just like the perfect grilled cheese sandwich: crusty on the outside, warm and oozy in the middle.

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