Any grilled cheese lover will intentionally grow their repertoire with delicious and creative sandwich recipes. This Don Gondola Italian grilled cheese combines salty salami with fresh pesto, ripe tomato, and provolone for a twist on the classic.
One doesn’t really NEED a recipe for grilled cheese. With that said, I absolutely love the Grilled Cheese Kitchen cookbook. I have used it frequently since I got it. Even though I’ve shared a few recipes, I highly encourage any grilled cheese lovers to purchase the book. It contains many fantastic grilled cheese recipes, along with soups, and macaroni and cheeses.
This particular Italian grilled cheese has a bit of flair between the pesto, provolone cheese, and salami. Add some thinly sliced tomatoes, and slather garlic-infused butter over slices of Italian bread. It’s the perfect grilled cheese when you want some added protein. I personally love salami, and used a traditional Genoa salami in my sandwich, but you could use another variety. I also made a basic and more traditional pesto than the basil-lavender pesto mentioned in the recipe.
I’m not sure what I love more, the crispy crunch of the perfectly toasted bread or the melted cheese! The combination of flavors here remind me of an Italian sub or grinder as we call them in New England. I actually like this Italian grilled cheese even more because of the super crusty exterior. I’m more of a crust person than a soft bread person. Like any other grilled cheese, this recipe pairs really well with soup! I made a celery and potato puree soup that believe it or not was a really nice pairing. Serve this sandwich on its own, with a soup of your choice, or a light salad.
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What’s your favorite way to get creative with your grilled cheese? Let me know in the comments below! And don’t forget to rate this recipe if you try it. Thank you 🙂
Don Gondola Italian Grilled Cheese
- 1 1/2 teaspoons unsalted butter at room temperature
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 slices Italian loaf
- 1 teaspoon Basil-Lavender Pesto or regular pesto (see notes for link to recipe)
- 2 slices provolone cheese young, plain provolone, not aged or smoked
- 2 ounces [55 g] thinly sliced salami
- 2 or 3 slices small ripe plum tomato about 1/4 in [6 mm] thick
- Heat a cast-iron or nonstick skillet over medium-low heat.
- In a small bowl, stir together the butter and garlic powder until well blended. Spread the garlic butter on one side of each bread slice, dividing it evenly. Place one slice, buttered-side down, on a clean cutting board. Spread with the pesto. Layer one slice of the provolone, the salami, tomato slices, and then the second slice of provolone on top. Finish with the second slice of bread, buttered-side up.
- Using a wide spatula, place the sandwich in the pan, cover, and cook until the bottom is nicely browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn and cook until the second side is browned and the cheese is melted, about 3 minutes longer. Cut the sandwich in half, if desired, and serve immediately.
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