I've been holding on to this little gem for months; as it essentially kicked off a gourmet 'grilled cheese' phase in my household. I've never been much for sandwiches, especially of the warm, or grilled, variety; but the turn of the weather brought on a craving for hearty meals that are simple to make. Thus lunchtime sandwiches were born.
Of course, I just so happen to be lucky enough that I live in beautiful Sunny California where, even in Winter, I can walk down a few blocks and purchase 9 California Avocados for $5. If you're jealous, I assure you the price per avocado rarely drops below 1/$1 in national grocers here. If I don't catch the stand during hours I pay the same as everyone else; perhaps with a little extra sting for knowing they are grown in my proverbial backyard. In any case, some years back I had indulged in a local specialty (somewhere along the CA coast), in a quaint little diner. While the name was some variation of it's more common moniker, I've since come to know it as The Green Goddess. A heavenly blend of greens, grain, and dairy symphonic enough to pay tribute the the women of Greek myths. Featuring primarily summer ingredients, this beauty is equally tantalizing during colder months, when we are often overwhelmed with much heavier plates.
You'll find my version of the recipe below; please note that mustard is most certainly optional, yet Goat's Cheese Crumbles are necessary for binding the central ingredients. Whenever grilling I always prefer a fine Extra Virgin Olive Oil, to achieve a warm toasted crust, without the burn. Additionally, whole wheat is recommended most for it's ability to ground the ingredients, and digests slower for a more filling meal with much less calories than those pesky fast food burgers.
2 Slices (Whole Grain Preferred) Bread
2 Slices Mozzarella Cheese (Melty Substitutes OK)
1/2 Large California Avocado
Handful of Fresh Baby Spinach
2 TBSP Brown Honey Dijon Mustard
Handful of Crumbled Goats Cheese (Small Crumbles)
2-3 TSP Virgin Olive Oil
1.) Spread Honey Dijon to outer inner edges of each slice. Some substitute this with actual Green Goddess dressing (a heavy spinach pesto cream), though I prefer the gentle kick of the mustard.
2.) Top each slice of bread with one slice of Mozzarella, and an even layer of Baby Spinach Leaves.
3.) Top one slice of bread with even slices of fresh California Avocado.
4.) Generously crumble Goat's Cheese atop avocado, being sure to allow crumbles to fill craters between avocado slices. Build by pressing both halves together, sandwich style.
5.) Add 2 TSP Extra Virgin Olive Oil to warm skillet and allow to spread. Place the sandwich in the hot pan, gently nudging it through the oil, to allow a clear coating on the bread. Flip when cheese on lower half begins to melt, or crackling can be heard. Add remaining Olive Oil and repeat process with the dredging on other side of sandwich. This will allow the bread to brown beautifully.
6.) Remove from heat when cheese is sufficiently melted, or bread has reached desired golden hue.