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Ricotta & Beet Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

with Persimmon & Marinated Fennel Salad

Ricotta & Beet Grilled Cheese Sandwiches with Persimmon & Marinated Fennel Salad
Cook Time
15-25mins
Makes
2 Servings
Nutrition
Group 2
Est. 660 calories

Cool, creamy ricotta cheese is the perfect match for sweet, tangy pickled beet in these gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches. We’re pickling the beet by quickly cooking it with a bit of honey, shallot and red wine vinegar. (To help avoid staining when prepping your beet, be sure to line your cutting board with paper towels.) Our side salad features marinated fennel and pops of delicate sweetness from bright slices of persimmon, a gorgeous orange fruit that ripens in the fall.

Prepare the ingredients:
1 Prepare the ingredients:

Wash and dry the fresh produce. Peel the shallot and mince to get 2 tablespoons (you may have extra shallot). Cut off and discard any fennel stems. Halve the fennel bulb lengthwise; cut out and discard the core, then thinly slice crosswise. Core the persimmon and thinly slice into rounds; place in a bowl with ¼ of the vinegar to prevent browning. On a paper towel-lined cutting board, peel the beet and grate on the large side of a box grater.

Pickle the beet:
2 Pickle the beet:

In a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), combine the shallot, beet, honey, half the remaining vinegar and ¼ cup of water; season with salt and pepper. Heat to boiling on high. Once boiling, cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 6 minutes, or until the beet has softened and the liquid has cooked off. Transfer to a bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. Rinse and wipe out the pan.

Marinate the fennel:
3 Marinate the fennel:

While the beet pickles, in a large bowl, combine the fennel and remaining vinegar; drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Set aside to marinate, stirring occasionally, for at least 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Assemble the sandwiches:
4 Assemble the sandwiches:

While the fennel marinates, place the bread slices on a clean, dry work surface. Evenly spread the cheese onto the slices; season with salt and pepper. Divide the pickled beet (draining before adding) between 2 of the slices. Complete the sandwiches with the remaining slices.

Cook the sandwiches:
5 Cook the sandwiches:

While the fennel continues to marinate, in the same pan, melt half the butter on medium-high until hot. Add the sandwiches and cook 2 to 3 minutes on the first side, or until golden brown. Add the remaining butter and flip the sandwiches; cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy. Transfer to a cutting board.

Make the salad & plate your dish:
6 Make the salad & plate your dish:

While the sandwiches cook, add the persimmon to the bowl of marinated fennel. Drizzle with olive oil and toss to combine; season with salt and pepper to taste. Cut the cooked sandwiches in half. Divide the sandwiches and salad between 2 dishes. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

1 Prepare the ingredients:

Wash and dry the fresh produce. Peel the shallot and mince to get 2 tablespoons (you may have extra shallot). Cut off and discard any fennel stems. Halve the fennel bulb lengthwise; cut out and discard the core, then thinly slice crosswise. Core the persimmon and thinly slice into rounds; place in a bowl with ¼ of the vinegar to prevent browning. On a paper towel-lined cutting board, peel the beet and grate on the large side of a box grater.

2 Pickle the beet:

In a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), combine the shallot, beet, honey, half the remaining vinegar and ¼ cup of water; season with salt and pepper. Heat to boiling on high. Once boiling, cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 6 minutes, or until the beet has softened and the liquid has cooked off. Transfer to a bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. Rinse and wipe out the pan.

Pickle the beet:
Marinate the fennel:
3 Marinate the fennel:

While the beet pickles, in a large bowl, combine the fennel and remaining vinegar; drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Set aside to marinate, stirring occasionally, for at least 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

4 Assemble the sandwiches:

While the fennel marinates, place the bread slices on a clean, dry work surface. Evenly spread the cheese onto the slices; season with salt and pepper. Divide the pickled beet (draining before adding) between 2 of the slices. Complete the sandwiches with the remaining slices.

Assemble the sandwiches:
Cook the sandwiches:
5 Cook the sandwiches:

While the fennel continues to marinate, in the same pan, melt half the butter on medium-high until hot. Add the sandwiches and cook 2 to 3 minutes on the first side, or until golden brown. Add the remaining butter and flip the sandwiches; cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy. Transfer to a cutting board.

6 Make the salad & plate your dish:

While the sandwiches cook, add the persimmon to the bowl of marinated fennel. Drizzle with olive oil and toss to combine; season with salt and pepper to taste. Cut the cooked sandwiches in half. Divide the sandwiches and salad between 2 dishes. Enjoy!

Make the salad & plate your dish: