Eggplant and Asiago Grilled Cheese

by Jenn on October 30, 2009

in Gluten Free,Vegetarian

Along with hot soup, grilled cheese is just one of those comfort foods that soothes the tummy as well as the soul on these chillier days.  We had just spent the morning raking up the yard, and needed something hearty and filling for lunch.  Since we happened to have a fantastic loaf of gluten free bread in the fridge that my husband picked up last time he went to our local natural foods store, all of a sudden grilled cheese was on both of our minds in a flash.

“OK, we have to make grilled cheese now, or I’m never going to get it out of my head today,” my husband told me.

I happened to remember seeing a baby eggplant and little green bell pepper in the fridge earlier (the very last one from our Charlie Brown-like plant out on the deck), and it all came together.  First, veggies were salted then sauteed in butter.  Wait, before that – get some GOOD bread.  If you are gluten free, don’t just settle for that frozen stuff in the back of the store – find someone who can make a really decent loaf, or make your own.  Good bread is really important when making grilled cheese.  Ok, tangent over, back to step one again.  Saute the veggies in a bit of butter.  And then more butter.  And just for good measure, a little more.  After all, everyone knows the secret to an awesome grilled cheese is of course not just the cheese, but also the butter.  And not the fake stuff either, you need to real stuff to get the right taste (not that we ever eat the fake stuff in our home anyways).

Then bread was sliced, coated in – yep, you guessed it – butter, and onto the pan it went with some sliced asiago.  A few minutes later, an awesome sandwich was born.  I didn’t go out all with many seasonings or spices, though I really wish I had a roasted tomato on hand to add to the eggplant and pepper.  But then, this didn’t need much.  The sauteed veggies added such a great flavor all on their own, and so I didn’t feel like the sandwich was lacking at all.  In fact, this grilled cheese was down right awesome!

Note – don’t even try counting the calories to this sandwich.  Just enjoy it.  My excuse is that we raked leaves all morning, that was tough work that allowed me to indulge in this cheesy buttery goodness called my lunch!


1 baby eggplant, sliced
1 small green bell pepper, sliced
4 tbs. butter
4 slices your favorite bread (regular or GF)
a little more butter
4 slices of asiago cheese

1. Salt the eggplant and let it hang out for a few minutes.  Meanwhile, heat up a decent sized pan and melt about 2 tbs. of butter. Then saute eggplant and bell pepper in the butter, gradually adding up to 2 tbs. more as the veggies soak up the butter in the pan.  Once browned and eggplant is tender, remove from heat and set aside.
2. Butter each bread slice and lay on your hot griddle – but not too hot – (I had the burner on med.) – if it is sticking or burning you need to turn the heat down a bit and maybe add, yep, just a little more butter haha. Add cheese on to the bread and let cheese melt a bit.  Then add next slice of bread onto the griddle, and add your sauteed veggies.  Next, top it all off with the cheesy bread slice cheese side down.  Wait a few minutes for the new bread slice to brown a bit, and then remove.
3. Slice and eat!