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The Green Acre

The Green Acre

A delightful grilled cheese sandwich loaded with healthy veggies.


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large red bell pepper, sliced about 1/8" thick
  • 1 red onion, sliced about 1/8" thick
  • 6 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced about 1/8" thick
  • Salt and pepper
  • 8 tablespoons butter, at room temperature, divided
  • 8 ounces fresh spinach leaves
  • 1 shallot or small yellow onion, minced
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • Pinch of ground nutmeg
  • Pinch of ground cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 8 slices rye bread or 4 seeded rye rolls, split
  • 8 slices Wisconsin gouda cheese
  • Roasted peppers, optional


  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Heat an oven-safe skillet over high heat. Add olive oil, red pepper, and onions. Sauté 3 minutes. Add mushrooms and sauté additional 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Place skillet in oven and roast 15-20 minutes.
  4. Heat a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon butter, a splash of water, spinach, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook just until spinach is wilted. Reserve.
  5. For béchamel sauce: Heat saucepan over medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon butter and minced shallot or onion. Season with salt and pepper; stir for about 3 minutes, or until translucent. Add flour and stir to coat. Stir in the milk, a little at a time to avoid lumping. Add nutmeg and cayenne and bring to a low simmer, stirring often to keep from sticking. Cook at least 10 minutes; stir in mustard and let stand off heat.
  6. Heat skillet or sauté pan over medium heat. Butter one side of each bread slice or roll and place 4 slices, butter-side down, in pan. Top with slice of gouda, 2 tablespoons spinach, and 1/2 cup of peppers-onions-mushrooms. Top with 2 tablespoons of the béchamel sauce, another slice of gouda, and a slice of rye, butter-side up.
  7. Grill to melt the cheese and toast the bread to golden brown, flipping sandwiches once.

Servings: 4

Recipe and photo credit (used with permission): Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin