Esta's Kitchen: Heavenly Beer-Battered Grilled Cheese
By: Esta Buchanan, April 19, 2012
Don Parkinson - Esta stocks up on her favorite ingredients.
I’m fortunate to work with some pretty stellar co-workers. For starters, some of them have bowls of chocolate on desks, or, at the very least, the occasional bag.
They never make fun of my dancing at work events (at least to my face), and they know not to talk to me until after the second cup of coffee.
The last is for their own good really. I'm horribly grumpy in the morning.
Lisa G is one of the above said delightful co-workers that always has a bowl of chocolate on her desk, a smile in her step, and makes the best lemon cake I’ve ever had. And the other day she dropped a recipe on my desk for Betty Crocker's Beer Battered Grilled Cheese Sandwiches.
Beer Battered Grilled Cheese
Makes one sandwich, with leftover batter.
- 3 slices of bacon
- 2 slices rustic white bread
- 1 slice of American cheese
- 1 slice of Munster Cheese
- 3 thin slices of avocado
- 1 egg
- ¾ cup beer
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon chipotle chili powder
- ½ t of garlic powder
- Dash of nutmeg
- Dash of cayenne
- Butter for frying
Cook bacon until crisp; drain on a paper towel.
Place cheese, bacon and avocado on a slice of bread. Top with remaining slice of bread.
Heat griddle or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat or to 375°F.
In a shallow bowl, beat egg, beer, flour and spices with fork until smooth. Dip each sandwich into the batter, giving it a few seconds on each side; drain excess batter back into bowl.
Melt butter on the hot griddle. Cook sandwiches 3 to 4 minutes on each side until golden brown.
I almost kissed her full on the mouth... and she would have definitely let me. Seriously, this recipe is the best idea since Enimem and Lil’ Wayne decided to collaborate and create musical genius.
As you all know I’ve spent a fair amount of time trying to impart my wisdom to the world. I do this for a better you and a better America. So here’s my wisdom for you today: any time the recipe includes “dip this sandwich in beer batter then fry in butter,” you do it.
You do not pass GO, you do not collect $200, you just do it.
I put my own spin on the recipe of course. For starters, I did not use a pale ale. I used Harpoon’s Black IPA from their 100th Barrel Series.
It’s a spicy beer, and while it looks like a stout, it doesn’t have the strong flavor that a stout has. It held up nicely to the whole “frying in a shit ton of butter," test, and I could definitely taste the beer.
I added some spices to the batter, like garlic powder, cayenne and nutmeg. I also sliced and added some avocado to the sandwich, and I used different cheeses. I thought the provolone wouldn’t work well with beer.
Be careful when you’re frying these. It can burn easily, as the batter is thin. My advice is start off on medium heat to get the bread cooked through, then jack it up to high heat if you need to brown it. Remember: slow and steady wins the race.
Which is also my motto during make-out sessions.