Grilled Cheese, Italian Style

I dreamed this up one day when I really wanted a grilled cheese sandwich but there was no “orange” cheese in the house. I was also too lazy to run to the store, so….I rummaged around in the fridge and came up with some provolone, mozzarella and pepperoni. The pepperoni was sort of an afterthought but really made the sandwich.

You will need:

Bread (this time I went all in Italian and used a Ciabatta roll)
Mozzarella cheese (not Buffalo mozzarella), 1 or 2 slices
Provolone cheese, 1 or 2 slices
Sliced Pepperoni (I used a little less than 1/3 lb – that’s more than you need but you’ll want to snack while you make your sandwich)

First, preheat the oven to about 375. Spread the pepperoni on a baking sheet (I use foil to ease in the clean-up process). Bake for about 4 or 5 minutes. This will crisp up the pepperoni and help make it a little less greasy. After about 4 minutes the pepperoni may not look like it is crisp but to test it, take a piece out of the oven and allow it to cool for just a moment. Drain on paper towels. It will crisp as it cools. I learned about this little trick from my Italian neighbor. She told me her mom used to make it for her and her siblings all the time when she was little. They turn out like little pepperoni chips.




Next, split your Ciabatta roll and begin to assemble your sandwich. I try to put the equivalent of two layers of each cheese on the roll. Depending on the size of the roll and the cheese slices, you may want to fold the cheese or, if you prefer, just let it hang out. Then, pile on the pepperoni. The only question is how much you like pepperoni.





The only other thing left is to grill or otherwise heat your sandwich. You can put it under the broiler, bake it in the oven, brown it in a skillet (the method I chose) with some oil or butter, use a Panini grill or any other method you choose. The goal is to brown the Ciabatta and heat the sandwich to the point that the cheese begins to melt. Then enjoy! Yummmmmy!

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