A grown-up grilled cheese for spring! Asparagus and Brie Grilled Cheese is finished off with an arugula pesto to seal the deal.
Guys. It’s here!
You don’t understand how this makes me feel right now. Or, if you’re a fellow East Coaster who barely survived the long record-breaking winter, maybe you do understand how this makes me feel.
I tried to spend as much time outside this weekend as humanly possible. I ran not once, but twice outside and laid in a field of grass for approximately an hour, shifting from staring off into the blue, cloudless sky to doing some casual yoga stretches. And Steve and I had our first
meal drinks al fresco! It’s crazy how a little sunshine goes a LONG way. I mean it was as if the entire city had been hibernating all winter and came outside at the same time – oh, wait – they did. It was crazy how many people were out and about this weekend – it was refreshing to see.
And now I get to bust out all the spring produce! Hall-eh-lu-jah. Starting with asparagus for this delicious grilled cheese makeover.
I love grilled cheese sandwiches. They’re so easy and take me back to a simpler time. To this day, grilled cheese and tomato soup is a favorite comfort meal. They’re also really fun to makeover and create “adult-friendly” versions. No boozy grilled cheeses over here (although that gets me to thinking). I’m talking grilled cheese for the sophisticated palate.
A little brie + asparagus + arugula pesto on rustic bread = seriously sophisticated. Or just delicious.
And asparagus is chock full of nutrients like fiber, vitamins A, C, E, and K, and chromium – a mineral that helps support insulin and glucose regulation. It’s also a rich in glutathione, an antioxidant that protects against cancer and chronic disease.Print
For the pesto:
- 2 cloves garlic
- 4 cups chopped arugula, stems removed
- 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup pine nuts
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese
- 1 tbsp lemon zest
- Salt and pepper to taste
For the sandwiches:
- 10 spears asparagus, tough ends trimmed and cut in half
- 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 8oz brie cheese
- 4 tbsp arugula pesto
- 4 slices rustic wheat bread
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
For the pesto:
- Combine arugula, garlic, pine nuts, cheese, lemon zest and olive oil in a food processor and pulse until combined. Salt and pepper to taste.
For the sandwiches:
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Transfer asparagus to baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Roast for 10-15 minutes, or until tender.
- Heat butter over medium-low heat in a pan or griddle.
- Assemble sandwiches dividing the Brie and asparagus. Spread 1 tbsp of arugula pesto on each slice of bread for each sandwich.
- Place sandwiches on pan or griddle and cook for about 5 minutes on each side, or until bread is golden-brown and cheese is melted.
I love the bite of the bitter pesto against the creamy brie and the crunch of the asparagus. Steve was all over this too. The sure sign of a successful recipe makeover.
Tell me, what’s your favorite “grown-up grilled cheese?” Ever try asparagus on a sandwich before?
And if you liked this gourmet grilled cheese, check out my Dandelion and Fig Grilled Cheese!
I’m a nutrition coach and yoga teacher helping people to learn to love food again. I love cooking, taking pictures of my food and traveling around the world. Follow my blog for delicious, seasonal vegetarian recipes and simple strategies to bring more yoga and mindfulness into your life. And check out my e-book to learn how to improve your health through nutrition and yoga. Show me what deliciousness you make! Tag me @karalydonRD on Instagram.