Brie-and-pear toasted cheese

A top-shelf melt

Originally appeared in the August 25, 2011 edition of The Southside Times.

As far as “Fair Food” goes, this summer I had a minor set-back.  You might be familiar with the venerated Dairy Bar up at the Indiana State Fairgrounds—a pasteurized plethora of milkshakes, frozen custards, and hand-dipped ice cream.  Yet there’s another item for which fair-goers obediently fall in line: the Dairy Bar’s grilled cheese.

In the past, your standard American-on-white sandwich (traditionally delicious as it may be) was featured on a menu alongside nuanced offerings such as Colby- and gouda-on-wheat.  Yet—alas, this season—my love for the latter strata of cheese-and-wheat went unrequited.  This year, I was crestfallen to read the Dairy Bar’s menu, sans gouda.  More after the jump: (more…)

Jerk-spiced chicken sandwich with chimichurri

This “jerk” is no trouble

Originally appeared in the July 14, 2011 edition of The Southside Times.

The recipe’s title may sound intricate, but this is really just a simple sandwich.  There are really three key elements to any sandwich:  bread, spread (or condiment), and body.

Let’s start with the bread.  The distinctly rustic crust and tender-tunneled texture of ciabatta adds a nice “mouth-feel” effect, the buns acting like bookends to showcase the filling.  Read more after the jump: (more…)