Patty Melts

Introduction:

Sink your teeth into a timeless favorite that’s as comforting as it is delicious – Patty Melts. This iconic sandwich combines juicy beef patties, caramelized onions, melted cheese, and toasted bread for a mouthwatering experience that satisfies every craving. Whether you’re in need of a quick and easy weeknight dinner or a satisfying lunch option, Patty Melts are sure to hit the spot. In this article, we’ll delve into the irresistible appeal of Patty Melts and ensure you keep this recipe close at hand.

Ingredients:

  • 8 medium slices sweet onion such as Vidalia
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 pound extra-lean ground beef
  •  teaspoon salt
  •  teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 serving cooking spray
  • 8 1 ounce slices rye bread
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon-mayonnaise blend such as Hellmans Dijonnaise
  • 1 cup shredded reduced-fat Jarlsberg cheese

Directions:

  1. Arrange onion slices on a plate and drizzle vinegar over top. Divide beef into 4 equal portions, shaping each into a 1/2-inch thick patty. Season patties with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat a large grill pan over medium heat. Coat the pan with cooking spray and add onion. Cover and cook for 6 minutes, flipping halfway. Remove from pan, cover, and keep warm.
  3. Heat the grill pan over medium-high heat. Coat with more cooking spray and add patties. Cook until no longer pink in the centers, about 3 minutes per side. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center should read at least 160 degrees F 71 degrees C. Remove patties to a plate, drain and discard any grease, and wipe the pan clean with a paper towel.
  4. Spread Dijon-mayonnaise blend evenly over all bread slices. Layer 4 of the slices with 2 tablespoons Jarlsberg cheese, 1 beef patty, 2 onion slices, and 2 tablespoons Jarlsberg. Place remaining bread slices mustard-side down on top of the sandwiches.
  5. Heat the grill pan over medium heat and coat with cooking spray. Add sandwiches to the pan and place a cast iron or other heavy skillet on top, pressing gently to flatten sandwiches. Cook until bread is toasted, about 3 minutes per side, leaving the skillet on top as they cook.

Serving Tips:

  1. Serve Hot and Fresh: Patty Melts are best enjoyed straight off the skillet when the bread is crispy, the cheese is gooey, and the beef patty is juicy. Serve immediately for the ultimate dining experience.
  2. Pair with Pickles: Accompany your Patty Melts with a side of dill pickles or pickle spears. The tangy and crunchy pickles complement the rich flavors of the sandwich, adding a refreshing contrast to each bite.
  3. Dipping Sauces: Enhance the flavor of Patty Melts by serving them with dipping sauces on the side. Options like ketchup, mustard, or a homemade aioli can add an extra layer of flavor and elevate the dining experience.
  4. Garnish with Fresh Herbs: Before serving, garnish the plate with a sprinkle of freshly chopped parsley or chives for a pop of color and a touch of freshness. This adds visual appeal to the presentation and enhances the overall dining experience.
  5. Cut Diagonally: For an elegant presentation, slice the Patty Melts diagonally before serving. This not only makes the sandwiches easier to handle but also creates a visually appealing presentation on the plate.

Storage Tips:

  1. Refrigerate Leftovers: If you have any leftover Patty Melts, allow them to cool completely before transferring them to an airtight container or wrapping them tightly in aluminum foil. Refrigerate the leftovers promptly and consume them within 2-3 days.
  2. Reheat with Care: To reheat Patty Melts, preheat a skillet over medium heat and place the sandwiches in the skillet. Cook for a few minutes on each side until heated through and the bread is crispy. Alternatively, you can reheat them in a toaster oven or conventional oven at 350°F (175°C) until warmed to your liking.
  3. Freezing Option: While Patty Melts are best enjoyed fresh, you can freeze them for longer storage. Wrap each sandwich tightly in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil before placing them in a freezer-safe container or resealable bag. Label with the date and store in the freezer for up to 1-2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
  4. Individual Portions: If you plan to freeze leftovers, consider portioning the Patty Melts into individual servings before wrapping and freezing. This makes it easier to thaw and reheat only what you need, reducing waste and ensuring freshness.
  5. Avoid Moisture: When storing Patty Melts, be mindful of moisture buildup, which can cause the bread to become soggy. Use airtight containers or wrap them tightly to prevent moisture from seeping in and compromising the texture of the sandwiches.

FAQs:

1. Can I use a different type of cheese in Patty Melts? Absolutely! While Swiss cheese is traditional, you can experiment with other cheese varieties to suit your taste preferences. Cheddar, provolone, Monterey Jack, or even blue cheese can all be delicious alternatives that add a unique flavor twist to your Patty Melts.

2. Can I make Patty Melts with ground turkey or chicken instead of beef? Certainly! Feel free to use ground turkey or chicken in place of beef for a lighter option. Keep in mind that poultry tends to be leaner than beef, so you may need to add extra seasoning or moisture to prevent the patties from drying out during cooking.

3. Can I caramelize the onions ahead of time? Yes, you can caramelize the onions ahead of time to save time when making Patty Melts. Simply cook the onions as directed, allow them to cool completely, and store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Reheat them gently in a skillet before assembling the sandwiches.

4. Can I make Patty Melts without rye bread? While rye bread is traditional for Patty Melts and adds a distinctive flavor, you can use other types of bread if preferred. Sourdough, whole wheat, or even white bread can all be suitable alternatives. Choose a bread that you enjoy and that complements the flavors of the sandwich.

5. Can I prepare Patty Melts for a crowd? Absolutely! Patty Melts are a great option for feeding a crowd, whether it’s for a casual gathering or a party. You can cook multiple patties simultaneously on a large griddle or in multiple skillets to speed up the cooking process. Assemble the sandwiches as needed and keep them warm in a low oven until ready to serve.

Conclusion:

Don’t let this classic comfort food recipe slip away – keep Patty Melts close at hand for those moments when you need a delicious and satisfying meal. With its irresistible combination of juicy beef, melted cheese, caramelized onions, and toasted bread, Patty Melts are a timeless favorite that’s sure to become a staple in your kitchen. So gather your ingredients, fire up the skillet, and treat yourself to the ultimate comfort food experience with Patty Melts. Once you try them, you’ll understand why this recipe is one you’ll never want to lose.