Loon Outdoors & Travel Creel Presents: Grilled Cheese on the River with Chef Joshua Schwartz

Guides never want to be shown up by another guide. This certainly applies to fishing, but it might be even more true for lunch. In that regard, Joshua Schwartz (as in Chef Joshua Schwartz of French Laundry, Per Se, Bouchon, Del Dotto Vineyards and Travel Creel Hospitality) is a fellow fishing guide's worst nightmare. Here Joshua shares his favorite streamside lunch: the classic grilled cheese and tomato soup. Between the flavors, textures and core-warming effects, there truly isn't a better way to conclude the morning and face the afternoon. If you are going to make it, you might as well make it right.

Grilled Cheese

  • Sourdough (Della Fattoria - Levain)
  • Sliced provolone (Marin Cheese co)
  • White cheddar (Petaluma Creamery)
  • Mayonnaise
  • Mustard (Sierra Nevada Spicy Brown Porter Mustard)
  • Butter

Slice the sourdough.  Use two cheeses, a creamy and flavorful cheese like a cheddar, havarti or gouda along with a gooey, stringy cheese like provolone or mozzarella.  Add butter to the cast iron skillet.  Spread a thin layer of mayonnaise on the outside of the sandwiches.  Spread mustard on the inside of the bread.  Spicy brown mustard works great for this.  Add sandwiches to the pan with the mayonnaise side down, spread mayonnaise on the outside of the sandwiches on the top side.  Add more butter to the cast iron skillet and flip.  Let sandwiches grill to a golden brown with melted cheese before removing from skillet.  Dip in the hot tomato soup and enjoy!

Tomato Soup

  • 1 large can whole peeled tomatoes in juice
  • 1 onion
  • 4 cloves Garlic
  • 1/4 cup Olive oil
  • 1/4 cup risotto rice
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Chicken broth
  • Dice onion
  • Mince garlic

In medium thick bottom stainless steel pot heat olive oil and toast garlic. Add onion and cook for 1 minute till it softens. Add rice and canned tomatoes with juice. Add a cans worth of chicken broth or vegetable broth if you want to keep it vegetarian. Add Bay leaf. Simmer on low till rice is fully cooked( very soft). Remove bay leaf. Blend with blender till smooth. Adjust thickness with V8 or tomato juice. Adjust seasoning with salt, pepper and your favorite hot sauce.