The Grilled-Cheese Incident

[I wrote this on October 18, 2009.  It was the beginning of my cooking saga.  Somehow, the situation has managed to get better and worse at the same time.]

Several weeks ago, I was rather hungry. Unable to find any lunch meat or other available form of sustenance, I decided that my best option would be to make a grilled-cheese sandwich. I thought it was an excellent idea; I had seen many grilled-cheeses being made. If my little sister could do it, so could I.

This was, in fact, a terrible idea for the following reasons:

  1. I cannot properly make toast, let alone operate a stovetop safely.
  2. My little sister was not in a generous or helpful mood.
  3. My father was on his way to take a nap.
  4. My mother was missing.
  5. I do not know where the fire extinguisher is.

Unfortunately, I was unaware of any of this, so I located a frying pan, my sister watching from the kitchen table, brows raised. I placed it on the stove and turned the burner on, then off again just as quickly. I realized I needed PAM.

Alas, I could not find it, so I was forced to resort to my sister’s method of buttering the slices of bread and not using PAM at all. (I had mocked this method when she told me of it months before.)

But again, I could not find the butter; the shelf in the fridge was empty. My father, out of pity, pulled a large box labeled “Butter” from another section of the fridge and handed it to me before stomping off to sleep. Properly scolded for my apparent blindness, I selected a stick and placed it in the butter container. The solid noise it made against the glass clued me in to the fact that I was not going to be able to spread it any time soon. The logical fix? Microwave it.

Forty-five seconds later, I gave up. The butter was only melted on the outside, and it slid around the dish like it was alive; the inside, however, remained rock-solid. Ignoring this, I sliced off a chunk and attempted to spread it onto a piece of whole wheat, effectively tearing a large hole in the center of the bread and causing bits of it to stick to the knife.

Great. Buttering the pan it was, then. I chopped off another piece and dropped it in, re-lighting the burner and pushing it around to melt it faster. It began to boil violently. After turning the pan down again, I dropped my slices of bread into the butter. I was still using the torn piece.

Roughly five minutes into the process of frying bread, I realized I had forgotten a vital part of the grilled-cheese: the cheese! Frantically, I began to dig through the fridge, emerging with a package of cheddar. I slapped four thick slices onto one piece of bread and placed the other piece on top.

I added more butter. My sister looked on in a state of complete shock.

Checking to see how the bread was doing, I lifted the edge with my spatula. Burned. Stellar. I flipped it speedily, sending the lid askew, the melting cheese dripping through the hole onto the frying pan, where it boiled and burned. I was terrified now that I would burn the other side, so I quickly yanked it out of the pan and slapped it onto a plate. One side was burned; the other barely browned and drenched in butter.

Upon biting into my mangled grilled-cheese, I realized only the outer layers of cheese had melted. The inside was still cold.

But let me tell you, I ate that shit and it was the best damn grilled-cheese ever. Nothing tastes quite as delicious as an Epic Fail.

The infamous grilled-cheese. The other side is charred.

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