The Crowd Pleasing Peasant

It’s hard to feel like a peasant at the posh, outdoor Grove mall in West Hollywood when you spot Broadway star Nathan Lane leisurely suck down his drink from Jamba Juice, in a pink jump suit from head to toe, without a worry wrinkle in sight, especially around 2002, before flashy Angeleno’s were being jacked for daring to sport Rolexes on Melrose in broad daylight.

Buying your 1st panini grill at The Grove to make high end grilled cheese sandwiches, using homemade aioli’s from scratch based on the cookbook from LA famed chef and founder of nearby La Brea Bakery, Nancy Silverton, doesn’t make you feel chained to a lifetime of thankless, zero high, serfdom either. Still, when you’re a Stay-At-Home Koshetarian Comedian at 44 years old, whose still not in the Writers Guild of America yet, despite writing for TV twice, you get looked down upon with huffy, disgusted disdain if you ask the cheese monger at Whole Foods if they have Landa Lakes American Cheese or tell your mom how you use onions in most of your meals, which the kids love, only to hear, “Onions are peasant food, you know.”  Based on my mom’s sucks to be an elitist buzz kill reaction, you’d think, “I shamed my mom by reopening my account on Facebook, only to tag all of her friends, with nothing but onion loaf sandwich recipes on Wonder Bread, holla, thank you very much.  At the same time, inheriting money, marrying into it or earning plenty yourself, doesn’t always overcompensate for certain hard to shake hick tendencies such as insisting on drinking chardonnay before it cools, or for proclaiming Meghan Markle is anything less than a race pimping, royal pain in the ass.

Some would argue the American grilled cheese is college freshman peasant food or your standard white trash trailer entre, yet it doesn’t have to be that way. Don’t get me wrong, Landa Lakes, yellow American cheese on Wonder Bread was fine growing up, despite my mother being weak on monitoring burnt toast detail. Still, what I learned in my mid-twenties as a proud panini owner in Sherman Oaks, CA at the time, working as a bartender for a bit at a fancy 4-star French restaurant on La Cienega before I got canned for breaking too many wine glasses on the job as the Mexican bus boys snickered at me, with dumb white boy derision as deserved, is that assuming ownership of making a grilled cheese a notch better than mom’s burnt ass, 3 bite edible ones, will help ensure you no longer feel like a slovenly dirty white boy no more. Foreigner lives, holla, thank you very much.

A great tip I learned from my panini book by big deal chef Nancy Silverton was to rub a peeled off bulb of garlic and rub it sensuously all over both pieces of bread you’re using to make a more substantial, elevated grilled cheese than what you’re reared on in the past, which miraculously imbibes all the garlicy, yummy essence you need. Personally, sourdough is my favorite bread of choice for grilled cheeses yet dare I say, peasant bread will get the job done to. I’ll also kick up the excitement factor by transforming the standard grill cheese into a bomb veggie panini melt of sorts, by adding super fresh local Mozzarella from any Italian grocer or from Whole Foods for that matter while also slathering on a semi-homemade basil aioli, consisting of nothing more than chopping up some fresh basil, mixed with peeled off pieces of garlic, interlaced with a little pinch of salt and pepper mixed in a premade mayo, and your perceived days of peasantry dissipate faster than the sandwich, assuming you also add some fresh, borderline emerald green leaves of spinach and olive oil drenched, diced up, seasoned cherry tomatoes, which is the ultimate cherry bomb popping, topping on top. My kids loved this last batch of grilled cheese so much, there wasn’t a single crumb left between them. Are you getting yummy dances from your grill cheese creations? Are your kids going out of their way to announce at the highest possible decibel, between more scrumptious, shishy bitch bites, “Delicious Daddy, absolutely delicious?” I didn’t think so, you peasant shaming cunts. This Koshetarian Comedian continues to bang out more sheets of comedy gold with no clear payday sight, yet if I keep generating rave reviews like this, I’m bound for an eventual pay hike.

Michael Kornbluth

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