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Shishito grilled cheese sandwich

Time 25 minutes
Yields Makes 1 sandwich
Shishito grilled cheese sandwich
(Mel Melcon/Los Angeles Times )

Quick pickled carrot and daikon

1

Peel and finely-julienne the carrot and daikon, and place in a glass or non-reactive container or bowl.

2

In a saucepan, heat the sugar, water, vinegar and salt over high heat, stirring until the sugar and salt are dissolved. Continue heating just until the mixture comes to a boil. Remove from heat and pour over the vegetables.

3

Stir the mixture, coating the vegetables and making sure they are submerged (if necessary, weight them down to keep them under the liquid). Set aside for ½ to 1 hour to quickly pickle, then cover and refrigerate. This makes about 3 cups drained pickles, which will keep, refrigerated, up to 2 weeks.

Shishito grilled cheese

1

Heat a griddle or cast iron pan over medium-high heat until hot. Add the shishito peppers and toast until softened and blistered on all sides, 4 to 6 minutes, rotating frequently. Remove from heat and set aside until cool enough to handle.

2

Butter 1 side of each of the slices of bread with mayonnaise. Top each slice with half of the cheese. On top of one slice, arrange the shishito peppers, then the drained pickles and cilantro sprigs. Top with the inverted second slice of bread to form a sandwich, pressing gently so everything stays together.

3

Heat the griddle over medium-high heat until hot. Meanwhile, butter the outside of one side of the sandwich with mayonnaise.

4

Invert the sandwich onto the hot griddle, and butter the second (top) side with mayonnaise. Grill the sandwich until the bread is crisp and golden-brown, and the cheese is starting to melt. Flip the sandwich and repeat with the second side. Remove from heat.

5

Slice the sandwich and serve immediately.

Use a combination of Abbaye de Belloc (a sheep’s milk cheese from the Basque region of France) and Bethmale (a goats’ milk cheese from the Basque region of France), or a combination of crumbled fresh goat and part-skim mozzarella cheeses to make the sandwich.

Noelle Carter is the former Los Angeles Times Test Kitchen director. She left in January 2019.
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