The Cinder Grill excels in precision cooking. It reliably turns out perfectly prepared dishes, nothing under- or over-cooked. However, it does take the Cinder some time to produce these splendid results. A fraction of the time that traditional water-bath based sous vide requires, but some time nonetheless. So what do you do if you need a hot quick meal?
You build a hearty sandwich and grill it to toasty perfection on the Cinder Grill! This article is all about tips and tricks to help you make the perfect grilled sandwich on your Cinder.
A Versatile Quick Meal
The sandwich began as a quick meal of protein wrapped in bread. However, a grilled sandwich takes this easy meal to the next level. Grilling adds toasty flavor and crunchy texture. Also, it melds the sandwich ingredients, enabling you to fit more into the sandwich and to eat the results somewhat neatly. Most of all, a hot meal provides a sense of contentment and internal warmth which make you feel truly fed. Cold food just doesn’t feel as nourishing, even if in summer it can be refreshing.
The Cinder Grill is perfect for making grilled sandwiches. The heavy lid which protects food during sous vide cooking provides heat from both sides as well as weight. Its flat plates transfer that weight evenly, compacting the sandwich rather than pushing out the ingredients. The precise temperature control guarantees a nicely toasted sandwich full of pleasantly warmed fillings. Rarely is such an easy meal so satisfying!
Even an Easy Meal Has Details
However, a good grilled sandwich can be derailed at a few points along the way.
The first one is the choice of bread. Only the most lightly filled grilled cheese can be built on squishy white bread. Most sandwiches require two solid slices of good quality bread, and all taste better on it.
The next is the choice of fillings. All fillings need to be as cooked as necessary before they go into the sandwich. They will warm through inside, but not cook further. Also, in general, less moist fillings work better than wetter fillings. Wet foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables can make the bread soggy. This prevents toasting and can even make the sandwich collapse. One solution to this problem is to pat thinly sliced vegetables with paper towels. This should drain your tomatoes and onions enough.
The amount of fillings matters as well. Too much and the grilled sandwich will never cohere into one delicious unit. Therefore try to restrict the total amount to less than a cup per sandwich. Also, layer cheese between other fillings to help stick the sandwich together.
Grilling Up Your Sandwich
First, set your Cinder to come to temperature. As we note on our Food Guide, we recommend 350 as a good temperature. However, because that’s also the smoke point of butter, we suggest using another fat, such as heat safe oils or even delicious ghee.
Next, assemble your sandwich, considering the suggestions above. Brush the outer surface of the bottom slice of bread with your chosen fat, and the top surface of the top slice. For extra insurance against sticking you can wrap the sandwich in parchment paper if you like.
Then place the sandwich in the Cinder Grill and lower the lid. Toast for about ten minutes, then check to be sure both sides are cooked. If the upper side isn’t crisp and browned enough, use a large spatula to carefully flip your sandwich and cook another five minutes.
Finally, remove your grilled sandwich from your Cinder and enjoy your deliciously easy meal!
One Grilled Sandwich, Infinite Possibilities
Two good starting points for getting to know grilled sandwiches are our recipes, designed specifically for the Cinder Grill. We offer an heirloom tomato sandwich and a butterscotch ganache treat. The second hints at all the sweet sandwiches you could make, everything from pears and Brie to gooey chocolate with sliced strawberries. Meanwhile almost anything you like can go into a savory grilled sandwich, from leftover meats and vegetables to cold cuts and prime farmer’s market produce. Just keep an eye on the amounts and the moisture as you build quick meal after easy meal after tasty meal, all between two slices of bread and toasted on your Cinder Grill!