Dana Treat – Treat Yourself

Chile-Cheese Gratin Sandwiches

Posted June 15, 2010

Chile Cheese Gratin Sandwiches
Adapted from Savory Baking
Serves 8

Two notes.  Worcestershire sauce is not vegetarian – it contains anchovies.  If you care, you can find a vegan sauce at Whole Foods or just omit it.  I sprayed my pans with non-stick spray and some of the bread stuck to the bottom, so be sure to grease your pans well.

Chile-Cheese Bread
2 cups flour
2 tsp. sugar
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. salt
4 ounces (1 cup) sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 cup whole milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 4-ounce can peeled mild green chiles, drained
1 jalapeño pepper, seeds and membranes removed, finely diced
½ cup red bell pepper, finely diced

Cheddar Topping
4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
4 ounces (1 cup) sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 ounce (¼ cup) Romano cheese, shredded
½ tsp. Worcestershire sauce
½ tsp. garlic powder
Pinch of salt
8 tomato slices

To prepare the bread:
Preheat the oven to 375ºF and butter or spray an 8-by-3-inch loaf pan.  Stir the flour, sugar, baking powder, pepper, and salt together in a medium bowl.  Add the cheese and gently toss until the cheese is evenly distributed throughout the mixture.

Whisk the milk, oil, egg. green chiles, chopped jalapeño, and red bell pepper in another bowl.  Pour the milk mixture over the flour mixture and briefly blend with a spatula.  The batter will look moist.  Pour the batter into the prepared pan and place it in the oven.  Bake until the top is golden brown and springs back gently when touched in the center, about 45 minutes.  Put the loaf on a cooking rack for 10 minutes and then remove the bread from the pan to completely cool.

To Prepare the Topping:
Put the butter, Cheddar and Romano cheese, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, and a little salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whip attachment.  Whip for 2 minutes on medium speed.

Set the oven to broil.  Cut the loaf into 8 slices and lay the slices on a baking sheet.  Place a tomato slice on each piece of bread.  Spoon about 2 heaping tablespoons of the cheese topping over each tomato slice.  Put the baking sheet into the oven about 4 inches away from the flame and broil until the cheese is bubbly and golden, 3 to 5 minutes.  Serve immediately.

(Wrap cooled bread in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 1 week, or freeze for up to 1 month.  Remove the loaf from the freezer and thaw at room temperature for a couple of hours.  The Cheddar topping can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.)

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