Just when you thought grilled cheese couldn't get any better, this tasty casserole will be a quick favorite.
Grilled Cheese & Tomato Casserole
- 1 crusty sourdough peasant loaf (1/2" slices)
- 1 pound sliced, sharp, yellow cheddar cheese
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves (plus more to garnish)
- 1 stick unsalted butter (softened)
- 1 medium onion (grated)
- 3 garlic cloves (grated)
- 4 .5 ounces tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 6 eggs
- 1/4 cup Monterey Jack cheese (grated)
- 1/4 cup sharp, yellow cheddar cheese (grated)
- extra-virgin olive oil
- Preheat oven to 325ºF.
- Lightly grease a 9"x9" baking dish with cooking spray.
- Butter both sides of each piece of bread and season with salt and pepper. Place bread on a baking sheet and cook until golden, flipping once, about 8 minutes.
- Build sandwiches using two slices of bread, 3 slices of cheese and 2-3 basil leave. Place the basil leaves between the slices of cheese. Cut the sandwiches into 4 pieces each.
- Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high and add a few tablespoons of olive oil. Add the onions and a pinch of salt, and sauté until lightly caramelized about 3 minutes. Add the garlic, tomato paste, paprika, thyme, and pepper flakes and cook until fragrant and paste is rust-like in color. Reduce heat to low and whisk in milk and cream. Season with salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Remove pan from heat. Ladle a small amount of the warm sauce into a medium bowl. Add the eggs and immediately whisk to temper and combine. Add the egg mixture to the sauce and whisk to combine.
- Shingle the sandwiches into the prepared baking dish and pour the egg mixture over. Sprinkle on the grated cheese.
- Place in the oven to bake for 30 minutes until golden brown on top.
- Remove casserole from the oven and let cool for 15 minutes. Serve warm with a a garnish of torn basil.