For the past 10 years The Grilled Cheese Invitational has attracted masterful grilled cheese chefs and eager eaters to sample the best in warm, melty, dairy based creations. Originally created in 2003 by Tim Walker and hosted in an artist loft in Downtown Los Angeles as a competition between friends, The Grilled Cheese Invitational has grown into a national movement (with 2012 being hosted in the parking lot of the Rose Bowl) dedicated to perfecting the art of grilled cheese, with thousands of cheese fiends and regional competitions across the country.
This year Gwendolyn Mathers, LA Outreach Director for CompassionOverKilling.net took 3rd place in the Pro “Honey Pot” (dessert) category, making 2012 the first year that any award has gone to a vegan entry in the The Grilled Cheese Invitational!
For your viewing, cooking and consuming pleasure, we present Gwendolyn’s creation, “The Aurora Borealis.”
2 slices thick rustic sourdough bread
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp Earth Balance or other vegan butter
3 tbsp Daiya Mozzarella Shreds
3 tbsp Tofutti Cream Cheese
½ peach, peeled and soaked in a combo of 50/50 brandy and simple syrup
1 pound of berries
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup orange juice
Berry Reduction Sauce
- Mash berries with sugar and juice and let set for at least an hour.
- Pour berry mixture into a small pot, place over low heat, and lightly simmer for 20-30 minutes, or until liquid has reduced by almost half.
- Strain out large bits and seeds (optional) and refrigerate in a glass jar (keeps for about a week).
- Melt one tbsp of Earth Balance and maple syrup in a nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat.
- Drop one side of the bread into mixture and remove. Then add another tbsp of the Earth Balance and syrup in the pan and place the dry side of the bread into the mixture.
- Leave the bread on the heat and grill until the sugar has caramelized and is golden brown.
- Flip the bread and immediately add the Daiya cheese on ONE slice of the hot side of the open bread and smear the cream cheese on the other slice of hot bread.
- Slice the peach and stick onto the cream cheese.
- Stick the two open sides of bread together and continue to grill, flipping once, until both sides are crispy and middle is hot.
- Cut in half and drizzle with Berry Reduction.
For more of Gwendolyn’s creations you click on MissKitchenWitch.com