Pear, Ham, and Gruyere Melt with Pesto

I unfortunately did not get to eat this sandwich.

It has now been three days since I got my wisdom teeth removed, but I am still unable to open my mouth properly.  The only way I can eat is by taking the tiniest baby bites of food, chewing them carefully with my front teeth like I’m a rodent nibbling on a seed, and mushing that food around in my mouth until I eventually swallow the entire thing, still partially whole.  It takes me approximately an hour to eat a single meal.

With this dilemma in mind, it probably would have taken me an entire afternoon to eat this sandwich.  Instead of wasting away at the kitchen table listening to David Suzuki talk about decomposing bodies (seriously, this was what was on CBC  at lunch time), I decided to instead make this sandwich for my mom.  This sandwich was inspired by the leftover gruyere we had sitting in our fridge from the mac and cheese I made earlier this week.  The pear, gruyere, ham combination came flitting into my mind one day, and a quick googling told me that the three together would produce wonderful flavours.  My mom’s verdict of the sandwich was that it was really good, so I’ll have to take her word for it until I can eat solid foods again and make myself a duplicate of this sandwich back in Ottawa.

Anatomy of the sandwich:

Bread: focaccia or ciabatta bun
Layer 1: Two slices of black forest ham
Layer 2: Approximately six thin slices of gruyere cheese
Layer 3: One pear, sliced thinly
Layer 4: Pepper, to the max
Layer 5: Arugula
Layer 6: a dabbling of pesto

Voila! A delicious and quick lunchtime melt that is suitable for feeding mothers, significant others or, most importantly, yourself.  Grill all these things together and you have a savoury and filling sandwich.  I made my mom’s sandwich in our fancy convection microwave since it has a special “grill” button.  If you don’t have one of these high tech devices, you can always just melt everything in your toaster oven or oven.  Gosh I wish I had tried a bite.

PS: This whole wisdom teeth thing isn’t all bad.  Case in point: I’m currently eating a homemade chocolate milkshake with a spoon.  Life is grand.

Recipe: Pear, Ham, and Gruyere Melt with Pesto
– 1 focaccia or ciabatta bun
– 2 slices black forest ham
– 6 thin slices of gruyere
– 1 pear, thinly sliced
– 1/2 tsp crushed pepper
– 1/4 cup arugula, chopped
– 1 tbsp pesto

Cut your focaccia or ciabatta bun in half.  Assemble ham, gruyere, pear and pepper on the bottom portion of the bun.  Spread pesto over the top half of the bun.  Grill in microwave, toaster oven or oven until bun begins to toast and cheese is melted.  As soon as the cheese is melted, lay arugula on sandwich.  Grill for another minute.  Put top of bun back on the base, cut sandwich in half and enjoy.  Makes one serving.

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