Caramelized Onion Pear Grilled Cheese Sandwich and a Harry & David Giveaway
Your childhood favorite….elevated! This Caramelized Onion Pear Grilled Cheese Sandwich is a sweet and savory sandwich you won’t be able to put down. Tender, juicy pears are the perfect balance to the buttery caramelized onions and sharp gruyere cheese. A touch of thyme puts this sandwich at the top of your favorite things list!
Hey guys! It’s the last day of my favorite things giveaway for this season and I’m offering up a gift that just keeps on giving….a year long subscription to the Harry & David Signature Fruit of the Month club! It’s my favorite gift to give to others because it’s definitely not a one and done deal. Each and every month, a different seasonal favorite is delivered right to your doorstep bringing a sweet treat that nobody can resist. THIS is the gift that I send to friends and family every year and why my partnership with Harry & David is so special to me. And the fact that their pears make this Caramelized Onion Pear Grilled Cheese Sandwich seriously epic.
I had the opportunity to travel to Medford, Oregon last month to tour the pear orchards and Harry & David headquarters. It was a fun filled week packed full of great food and company all while learning, even more, just how special the Harry & David company is. Every person that works there is part of the Harry & David family in which they take great pride in the products they deliver to your home. From the laborious process of growing, picking and packing the pears…..to the carefully curated gift boxes loaded with goodies that your family with fight over. (You need a good holiday argument….right?) Every single detail is accounted for and shows in the quality of the Harry & David products.
Over three days, we spent our time visiting wineries, hanging out in the pear orchards and touring the candy factory. After we checked into the quaint Magnolia Inn we headed down the street for dinner at a local tasting room. I finally got to meet some of my favorite bloggers that I’ve been stalking for several years. The next morning we headed to one of Harry & David’s many pear orchards where I had the chance to be a REAL pear picker and learned just how difficult it is to pack those pears straight from the tree without damaging them (you need serious skills here!).
Harry & David even created their own buckets with have a “trap door” so you can gently roll them out into the collection bin. And….the amount of pears picked by each person each day is staggering….I would tell you the number but I had it all on video, then my phone crashed and well….technology is a bugger sometimes.
After the orchard we visited the headquarters to make our very own bark recipe…..and I had no idea how much fun making chocolate bark could be. But when you’re given a bowl of expertly tempered chocolate (in your choice of milk, white or dark) things tend to get a little easier. And the topping selection was totally over the top….I could have made chocolate bark all day long. Seriously. There was no end to my madness.
My first bark was loaded with candied oranges, nuts, caramel waffle cone and sea salt all drenched in dark chocolate. HELLOOOOO crazy masterpiece! The second I went a little more festive with more candied orange, pistachios, goji berries and white chocolate. Also crazy amazing but dark chocolate wins again!
For lunch, we visited an amazing winery with a spread that I could have snacked on for the remainder of the day.
The last day we visited the packing facility where Rosa taught me how to properly pack a gift box filled with goodies including the iconic golden pear.
There’s even a special way to wrap the golden pear….which I did incorrectly but I shipped it to my mom and, basically, my mom thinks that anything her kids do is spectacular (unless you rob a bank….of course) so she didn’t care that the pear wasn’t wrapped in the Harry & David way.
That evening we visited one last winery, Irvine Family Vineyards, where we learned all about Oregon wines (my new fave!) and enjoyed a multi-course dinner crafted with Harry & David products.
Each dish was a party for my palate and by the time dinner was over I was in a food/wine coma. So much inspiration was provided for future recipes that I can share with all of you here and I’m so thankful to be a part of the Harry & David family.
When I made it home, I was craving a bit of comfort food and since I ALWAYS have Harry & David Royal Riviera pears on hand this time of year I thought they’d make a sweet addition to my favorite grilled cheese sandwich. I LOVE to add caramelized onions to a classic grilled cheese because it tastes like a bowl of French Onion Soup but without the soup part…..and soggy bread. This Caramelized Onion Pear Grilled Cheese Sandwich is actually a better version of French Onion Soup….if you ask me.
So, I grated a blend of gruyere and Jarlsberg cheese then sprinkled it on a slice of bread. I topped the cheese with a healthy helping of these caramelized onions then arranged a few pear slices on top of the onions. Sprinkled with more cheese and topped with the remaining slice of bread, I buttered a pan and grilled to a perfect golden brown. If you’re feeling saucy….add a bit of fresh thyme leaves to your onions for an earthy hint of flavor that cuts the butter just a bit.
And….in my opinion, this Caramelized Onion Pear Grilled Cheese Sandwich would make an impressive lunch or light dinner served alongside my favorite Bourbon Roasted Pear Salad! Add a Cranberry Pomegranate Bellini to make your meal even more festive!
And don’t forget to enter to win your year long subscription to the Harry and David Signature Fruit of the Month Club! Details are below the recipe card.
Caramelized Onion Pear Grilled Cheese Sandwich
- 2 slices sturdy white bread
- 1/2 cup grated Swiss cheese I used gruyere and Jarlsberg
- 1/4 cup caramelized onions
- 1/2 pear thinly sliced and core removed
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon fresh chopped thyme
- Sprinkle half the cheese on one slice of bread and top with caramelized onions.
- Arrange the pear slices on the onions and top with the remaining cheese. Sprinkle with thyme.
- Cover the cheese with the remaining bread slice and spread 1 tablespoon of butter over the bread covering the entire surface.
- Melt the remaining butter in a skillet over medium heat. Place the sandwich in the pan unbuttered side down and cover with a lid. Turn the heat to low.
- Grill the sandwich for 2-3 minutes or until the cheese is beginning to melt and the bread is golden brown. Flip carefully with a spatula. Cover and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes until the cheese is melted and the bread is golden brown.
- Serve immediately.