Say 'Cheese' For Recipes That Please

KAY'S KORNER

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(EDITOR'S NOTE: Columnist Kay Loftfield is taking a much-deserved rest. The following is a reprinted Kay's Korner from last September.)

For the third consecutive year, the American Dairy Association (ADA) and nationally syndicated TV personality Mr. Food teamed up to challenge cheese lovers nationwide to create larger-than-life sandwiches that that are made with three domestic cheeses and served at least two people. For a complimentary leaflet featuring the winning recipes, send a self-addressed, stamped, business sized envelope to: "Mr. Food's Mega-Cheese Sandwich Mania," ADA Recipe leaflets, c/o Inland Marketing Services, P.O. Box 2322, La Crosse, Wisc. 54602-2322, or visit the American Dairy Association's Web site, www.ilovecheese.com.

While you are waiting for your leaflet, try the following recipes, which will feed 6-8 people in one fell swoop.

Grand-Prize Winner, Susan Asanovic of Wilton, Conn., created the Cheesy New York High-Rise Club, using Brie, Swiss and Havarti cheeses to become a winner. She received $3,000 and a trip for two to Super Bowl XXXIV in Atlanta.

Tony Thornton of South Bend, Ind., entered his Three-Cheese Colossal Focaccio with Mozzarella, Provolone and Cheddar cheeses to become a runner-up and win $750 and a one-year subscription to Mr. Food's Easy Cooking magazine, as did Mary Pat Cox of Scottsdale, Ariz. with her Monumental Muenster Melt, using brick, Muenster and Brie cheeses.

Add a cup of hot soup to any of these sandwiches and you could easily make a satisfying meal for a hungry family.

Susan's Cheesy New York High-Rise Club

1 unsliced 24 ounce loaf-style onion rye bread, seeded or plain

8 ounces Brie, with herbs or plain, rind removed

1 stick unsalted butter, softened

1 teaspoon crushed dried red pepper flakes

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1 medium red onion, sliced

8 ounces aged Swiss cheese, sliced

8 ounces pastrami, sliced

2 1/2 cups baby spinach salad, ready to use

4 ounces caraway Havarti cheese, sliced

Dijon mustard (optional)

Grand-Prize Winner

Slice bread lengthwise in thirds. Toast bread lightly if desired. Soften Brie 1 minute in microwave, if necessary. With a fork or in a food processor, crush or mash Brie cheese with butter and spices. Spread Brie butter over cut sides of bread, including both sides of middle slice. On bottom slice add half the onions, Swiss slices, pastrami, half the spinach, center slice of rye bread, remaining onions, Havarti and remaining spinach. Close sandwich with remaining Brie-buttered bread. Serve with Dijon mustard if desired. Serves 6.

Tony's Three-Cheese Colossal Focaccia

1 12-inch loaf round focaccia bread

1 15 ounce jar pizza or tomato sauce

6 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced

1 ounce pepperoni, sliced

6-8 ounces Mozzarella, sliced

4 ounces each, ham, turkey and Genoa salami, thinly sliced

6-8 ounces Provolone, sliced

6-8 ounces mild Cheddar, sliced

Runner-up

Preheat broiler. Slice bread crosswise and place cut-side up on cookie sheet. Spread pizza sauce on both halves, reserving 1/4 cup sauce. Layer top half with mushrooms, pepperoni and mozzarella cheese. Layer bottom half with deli meats, provolone and cheddar cheeses. Place under hot broiler 4-5 minutes, or until cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove from broiler. Place halves of sandwich together. Cut into 8 pie-shaped wedges and serve with remaining pizza sauce for dipping.

Mary Pat's Monumental Muenster Melt

1 1/2 pound loaf round sourdough bread

1/2 cup raspberry vinaigrette salad dressing

12 ounces precooked chicken slices

4 ounces brick cheese, sliced

4 ounces Muenster cheese, sliced

6 ounces apricot preserves

1/4 cup almonds, sliced and toasted

8 ounces Brie, sliced

Runner-up

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. With a serrated knife, slice horizontally through top of bread. Pull out soft center from bottom portion of loaf, making a bread bowl. Drizzle bottom and top halves of loaf with salad dressing. Fill bread bowl with chicken, brick and Muenster cheese slices. Spread apricot preserves over cheese and sprinkle with almonds. Top with Brie slices. Place bread top over filled bowl. Wrap with foil and bake 25-30 minutes. Slice into 6 wedges and serve. Note: To toast almonds, place almonds on baking sheet in preheated 350 degree F. Oven and bake until lightly toasted, 5-7 minutes.

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