El albergue

El albergue

Monday, July 30, 2012


Alright, hold on to your taste buds, my friends.  Because I am about to take you on one of the most amazingly mind-blowing, drool-inducing adventures you have ever had.  First, let’s step back to Saturday night, when I had spent the whole day at home and was in one of those comfy, couch and movie-type moods.  You know, when all you’ve been doing all day is veg, and all you want to do that night is veg some more, when all you’ve been eating all day is cereal and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and all you want to eat that night is something warm, gooey, and guiltily delicious…  Yes, it was one of those nights…

So, as I sat curled-up on the couch, staring at the ceiling and fiercely procrastinating on certain things I needed to do…certain things that are in fact necessary for me to continue residing in Spain under any semblance of legality…I remembered this most astounding recipe I’d seen on one of my favorite food blogs for a little bit of grilled heaven utilizing Gouda, bacon, and PEACH.  YES, PEACH.  The bacon probably doesn’t seem too far afield for most of us, I mean, who can’t imagine the additional perfume of crispy bacon wafting about in elegant combination with the already tantalizing odor of molten cheese between two buttery and oh-so-delightfully toasted pieces of bread?  But peach?  For some reason, the idea of putting something fruity and sweet smack dab in the middle of all that savory goodness just seems downright WRONG…and yet intriguing, quite intriguing…

I realized the suspense was killing me (WHAT WOULD THAT TASTE LIKE???), so I decided that a lazy Saturday night would be the perfect time to take the plunge and leap out on this culinary branch.  Residence papers ensuring my continued legal status here?  Nah, those would keep until Monday – the REAL pressing issue was definitely this tasty test just begging to happen.

And happen it did.  Oh man, did it ever.

The first experiment of the night: Brie, plums, and candied walnuts.  I kept the sandwiches in a warm oven until they were all made, so by the time the burner got turned off and this first sandwich made it onto the plate, sliced and ready to be devoured, the plums had turned to melty plum jam.  Wow.  It was so cool.  The walnuts though were slightly unimpressive.  That might possibly be due to the fact that I got impatient and didn’t really candy them correctly.  Maybe.  Just maybe.  However, with really well candied walnuts (or even almonds!) and a bit of cinnamon and spice, this baby could rock your world.

The second experiment of the night:  Gouda, Emmental, and onion sautéed with a dash of Balsamic.  Ok, so this obviously doesn’t include any fruit…my co-investigator aka friend thought one simply savory sandwich might be nice…but I remain convinced that this combination would be fantastic with fresh plums…or peaches…or even ...gasp! ...strawberries!  …my mind is drooling all over the place.

The third experiment of the night:  Gouda, banana, and blueberry preserves.  I was unconvinced at first, but my friend was certain that banana and Gouda cheese were made for each other.  And man was he right!  Especially with the extra punch of the blue berry preserves.  It.  Was.  Delightful.

The fourth and final experiment of the night:  Brie, banana, plum, and honey.  This was by far my favorite one.  The banana kind of melted into sweet amazingness, a perfect pairing with the creamy brie and piping hot plum.  And then the honey?  Wow.  It soaked into the bread, lending it own distinct touch to the overall symphony of flavors serenading my tongue. 

At most points of this adventurous meal, it kind of felt like we were eating straight-up dessert rather than anything that could possibly qualify for a meal – guilty sense of sweet seduction and all – but really, the only ingredient that might possibly be considered to be fully on the desserts only list was the honey.  Everything else was just bread, cheese, fruit, nuts, and butter!  (Can’t forget the butter…)  Although, to be honest, on those lazy, comfy, couch and movie-type nights, who really cares if you do eat dessert for dinner? 

And now, to finish those papers…

Oh yes, and if you want to see the original recipe, go check it out at:

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