Recipe courtesy of Brett Cooper

Outerlands Heirloom Tomato with Walnut Pesto Grilled Cheese

  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr 20 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Inactive: 30 min
  • Cook: 30 min
  • Yield: 6 sandwiches
Share This Recipe

Ingredients

6 slices rustic levain or sourdough bread

Walnut Pesto, recipe follows

18 thick slices heirloom tomato

Sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Aged sherry vinegar

Fresh Cheese, recipe follows

Oil, to coat cast-iron skillet

Fresh basil sprigs, for garnish

Walnut Pesto:

6 fresh basil leaves

2 cups walnuts, toasted

1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 clove garlic, finely minced

Juice of 1 lemon

Sea salt

Fresh Cheese:

5 pints fresh milk

2 pints fresh cream

Sea salt

4 Meyer lemons

1/4 cup white distilled vinegar

Freshly ground black pepper

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. 
  2. Spread each slice of bread with 2 tablespoons Walnut Pesto. Layer 3 slices tomato on each sandwich. Sprinkle with sea salt, black pepper and sherry vinegar. Place 2 tablespoons Fresh Cheese on top. Oil a cast-iron skillet, place the sandwiches in the skillet and cook until the cheese has melted. Garnish with sprigs of basil.

Walnut Pesto:

  1. Blanch the basil leaves for 2 seconds in boiling water. Allow to cool. In a food processor (or using a pestle and mortar), combine the blanched basil, walnuts, Parmigiano-Reggiano, oil, garlic, lemon juice and salt to taste. Work to a chunky, partially pureed consistency.

Fresh Cheese:

  1. To make the fresh cheese, put the milk, cream and a pinch of salt in a pan and heat to 185 degrees F over low heat. 
  2. Meanwhile, zest the lemons; reserve the zest, and then juice the lemons. Combine 1/4 cup lemon juice with the vinegar. 
  3. When the milk has reached temperature, turn off the heat and slowly whisk in the lemon juice and vinegar mixture. You should start to see curds form within 1 minute. Place a lid on the pan and let it sit for 30 minutes. 
  4. Strain through cheesecloth and cool the curds. (You can save the whey for other purposes like shakes.) Add the lemon zest to the curds and season with salt and pepper.

Fudge Factor

Chocolate Desserts

Indulge in our decadent chocolate desserts, from cookies and cakes to puddings, souffles and truffles.

Over-the-Top-Delicious Treats to Satisfy Your Food Obsession

Are you infatuated with ice cream? Do you lust over lobster? Swoon at the sight of chocolate? Here's the best recipe for each food …

Review: Anthony Bourdain and Eric Ripert's Chocolate Bar Nov 16, 2012

Anthony Bourdain and Eric Ripert have teamed up with master chocolatier Christopher Curtin to create the "Good & Evil" chocolate b …

How-To: Chocolate Cream Puffs

Make this classic and elegant French dessert using our step-by-step guide.

Easy Gift Idea: Chocolate-Covered Toffee Feb 7, 2013

Looking for an easy gift idea? Cooking Channel's recipe for Chocolate-Covered Toffee is just the ticket. A touch of coffee in the …

The Craziest Chocolate Creations for American Chocolate Week Mar 17, 2013

It’s officially American Chocolate Week. Check out photos of mind-blowing chocolate creations.

Essentials: Chocolate Basics Sep 1, 2016

Satisfy that chocolate craving in your very own kitchen. All you need is baking chocolate and a little know-how. It also helps to …

How to Make Truffles

Learn how to make a chocolate lover's favorite treat: the classic truffle made from smooth chocolate ganache.

How to Chop and Melt Chocolate

Lots of recipes call for melted chocolate. Follow these step-by-step instructions to do it properly.