Probably the best toasted sandwich ever, and I'm not biased in the slightest. Totally.
The secret is you have to fry it - no pannini press to squish the hell out of it, no toasting under the grill, no putting in a jaffle maker, even though they have their place.
No, for this sandwich, it has to be fried in butter. I'm sorry.
Once upon a time I was so over being underweight I decided to go on a reverse diet. My doctor said I needed to eat more calories than I burned, so I researched for weeks on what foods were calorie-dense and tried to incorporate them into my diet. I ate til I was absolutely stuffed. I was fed up with people making unwanted comments on my weight - something it appeared I had absolutely no control over, and felt awful about, so I thought if I could do something, I would.
This included making a sandwich like this, frying it in butter, then covering it in mayonnaise.
I'm not going to suggest that this time, but ohmygod it was good.
I don't do sandwiches, usually. I ate so many of them growing up I got thoroughly sick of them. I find them so unappetising now... unless they're toasted! I usually buy quite dense bread and I don't like sandwiches made like that. So if I can transmogrify the bread into something toasty and delicious, with a melty inside, I'm more likely to eat it.
I usually fill this sandwich with all the gorgeous things the deli counter has to offer, sandwich together with at least two types of cheese, and a lil something extra - in this case avocado, but pesto is perfect. Feel free to pack it with whatever you fancy, but promise me you'll fry it. Promise.
2 slices crusty sourdough
fresh basil leaves
salt and pepper
1. Spread butter on one side of the sourdough slices.
2. On the non-buttered side (I find it helps if I put the buttered sides together and pile the stuff on top before assembling the sandwich in the pan!), spread avocado and sprinkle with salt. Then add cheese, semi-dried tomatoes, feta and basil. Grind pepper over.
3. Place bottom of sandwich in a buttered frying pan on medium. Place top on sandwich, buttered-side up and cook until the underside is golden and cheese is beginning to melt.
4. Flip and cook until the other side is golden brown.