It seems I'm always the last to know about celebratory food days. I'm pretty sure I've missed every national cookie day (Dec. 4th), national peanut butter day (Jan 24th) and every other food "day" in the history of this blog. Who comes up with this stuff anyway?
Lo and behold, April is grilled cheese month. An entire month! I'll be darned if I miss out on celebrating grilled cheeses - especially the sweet variety with chocolate ganache dipping sauce.
This month-long cheese party aligns perfectly with April's Panera Bread post. You've got to have good bread for grilled cheese nirvana, and their Country Miche is perfect for grilling.
On a side note, I've really loved working with Panera Bread these last few months. Last Sunday, when I went to pick up a loaf of bread for this post, I started talking to one of the employees at the register about the charity work Panera Bread does in our community -specifically, the "Day-End Dough-Nation". Have you heard of this? Every day at closing Panera Bread's bakery items are packaged up and sent to local food banks. Here in Knoxville the donations go to Second Harvest Food Bank of East TN, which in this day and time is such an important resource in our community.
If your community would like to reach out to Panera Bread for "Dough-Nation" you can read all about it on this page , or submit a donation request here. To keep up with the latest news, follow them on Twitter or Facebook.
Raspberry Cream Cheese Paninis
with Chocolate Ganache Dipping Sauce
Yield 4 pieces (4 half-sandwiches) [click to print]
4 slices Panera Bread Country Miche
4 oz. cream cheese softened
4 tbsp raspberry jam
Butter for spreading on bread
Place a cast iron skillet or grill pan over medium heat.
Spread 2 oz. cream cheese on one slice of bread, and two tbsp. raspberry jam on another slice. Repeat with other two slices of bread. Sandwich together jam and cream cheese covered pieces and butter each side of the bread. Place sandwich in hot grill pan and cook for about 2 minutes on each side, or until cream cheese and jam are melty and bread is golden brown.
Chocolate ganache sauce:
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup chocolate chips
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
Place heavy cream and chocolate chips in a microwave proof bowl. Heat at 30 second increments, until cream is hot and chocolate can be whisked smooth. Whisk in butter until well incorporated. Serve immediately with Raspberry Cream Cheese Paninis.