Authentic Suburban Gourmet: Mini Grilled Cheese with Jalapeno Apricot Relish

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Last weekend I was invited by Tillamook Cheese and Soda PopPR to attend a Farmstyle Brunch at The American Grilled Cheese Kitchen in San
’s mission district.
  I love a great grilled cheese sandwich and
have long admired the Tillamook brand, so it was a no brainer – I needed to
attend.  Who knew Tillamook made more
than their famous medium cheddar cheese? 
Well they do. In addition to cheese, they make ice cream, butter, sour
cream, yogurt and their latest product launch is for their Greek style
.  By the way, it is different than
the typical Greek yogurt and quite frankly I am now hooked on it.  I will have a detailed post highlighting the
brunch and yogurt coming in about a week.

Click “Read More” below to continue reading

In the meantime, I had to run out and buy their famous
cheddar cheese to make a grilled cheese sandwich after our scrumptious and
indulgent brunch.  The America Grilled
Cheese Kitchen
doesn’t make the run of the mill grilled cheese with white bread
and processed American cheese – oh no – these are gourmet delights that will
leave you wanting to return the next day. 
Check out their website for the vast spread of gourmet grilled cheese
sandwiches.  During our brunch we had our
choice of breakfast sandwiches we wanted to have made to order.  I chose the “Breakfast Popper” which has
Jalapeno Relish, Zoe’s Bacon, Chevre, Tillamook Monterey Jack and a over easy
egg on artisan bread.  The first bite
transported me to grilled cheese heaven and then I stayed in that happy place until
it was all gone.

The sandwich was the inspiration for this week’s Friday
Night Bites
.  I decided to go miniature
but make that divine Jalapeno Relish and top each sandwich with Applewood
Smoked Bacon and fresh Arugula. 
Honestly, in the last week, hubby and I have had these little bites
three times – they are that GOOD!  The
recipe is simple and a complete crowd pleaser. 
It would go terrific with a chilled beer or a nice crisp
Chardonnay.  As the folks from Tillamook
tweeted to me prior to the brunch – “Cheddar come hungry” – I guarantee you
will not be hungry after several of these mini delights. 

Mini Grilled Cheese with Jalapeno Apricot Relish

1 Baguette

Tillamook Medium Cheddar


Applewood Smoked Bacon, crispy


Jalapeno Apricot Relish (Recipe below)

Determine the number of sandwiches you want to make.  Cut each slice about ¼ inches thick. You will
use half of slice of cooked bacon per sandwich. 
You will use 1 to 2 slices of cheddar cheese per sandwich.

Butter each side of the sliced baguette.  Place the cheese on the non buttered side and
place the two slices together.  Cook on
medium heat until golden brown on each side and cheese is melted.  Remove sandwiches and put about a heaping
teaspoon of relish on each one, a half of slice of cooked bacon and a few
sprigs of Arugula.  Enjoy.

Jalapeno Apricot Relish

8 oz. Dried Apricots, fine dice

6 Tablespoons white onion, fine dice

3 Large Jalapeno pepper, stems and seeds removed, minced

1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice

1 teaspoon Mustard Powder

1 Tablespoon Brown Sugar

1 Tablespoon Fresh Ginger, peeled and finely diced

2 ½ Tablespoons Apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon salt

Mix all ingredients for the Jalapeno Apricot Relish together
thoroughly, then cover and refrigerate for at least one hour, preferably over

Recipe slightly adapted from here

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