I was in the mood for an easy dinner, and grilled cheese seemed like the perfect solution. I rarely run low on cheese in the Eggplant Kitchen, and had some Kenny's Farmhouse cheddar, chive jack, and tomme that would deliver the oozy goodness I was after.
Tom + Chee, a pop-up eatery that operated out of a tent last winter adjacent to the ice skating rink on Fountain Square. The name refers to their primary menu items, a variety of tomato soups and grilled cheese sandwiches, which they served along with hot chocolate - perfect outdoor winter fare. (Happily they'll be back on the Square June 1 with an expanded menu.)
Although I sampled a number of their soups and sandwiches in December, I couldn't quite bring myself to go for their signature sandwich, a grilled cheese made with a glazed donut. However, I remembered that they grilled the donut inside out - cut side, not glazed side on the griddle - and, taking a similar tack, my focaccia conundrum was solved. I fried a couple of slices of bacon and layered them with cheese between slices of crust-inward bread.
Once I get a good crust on the bread, I usually place a lid partially over the skillet to encourage the cheese to melt. But this sandwich was taller than the sides of my skillet. So I improvised, with another pot over the skillet, ajar so the cheese would melt but I wouldn't steam all the crispness out of the sandwich.
Worked like a charm. With a side of asparagus spritzed with Meyer lemon juice (which also helped balance the fatty goodness of the sandwich), it was the perfect plate of comfort food for a chilly spring evening.