I love cheese- almost any kind of cheese, really. And, warming cheese just makes it even tastier. Add a crusty bread and some fruit, and I am in grilled cheese heaven. To keep it healthy, I like to make mine in bite size portions. So, today, I am in the mood for Mini Grilled Brie and Apple Bites with a Mixed Green Salad. It’s very simple, and just perfect for Sunday brunch.
What You’ll Need for the Grilled Cheese Bites
Crusty, Rustic Bread
Peach All Fruit Jam (optional)
What You’ll Need for the Salad
Apple Cider Vinegar
Let’s Do It
This really can’t be any easier. Coat a pan with non-stick spray on medium-high heat. Slice bread into small bite size pieces (square, rectangle, round- whatever you fancy, no need for perfection). Slice the brie and apples super thin.
Lightly brush olive oil on the outside of bread for the top and bottom. On the inside of the bread, you can add a very light spread of jam to sweeten the sandwich up a bit. Layer in apples and brie. Grill for about 2-3 minutes on each side.
To dress the Mixed Greens Salad, whisk together a tablespoon of olive oil with an equal amount of apple cider vinegar. Toss the mixture with the mixed greens and add in raisins and chopped walnuts. For a little extra oomph, toast the walnuts.
Brie Cheese: An excellent source of calcium and phosphorus, brie cheese helps to protect bones and teeth, as well as promotes energy. Brie also contains Casein, which is a protein. Dairy protein has recently been touted for its ability to control weight. Studies also suggest that dairy protein can reduce blood pressure and protect the body against toxins, bacteria and viruses. Brie cheese is also rich in essential nutrients like riboflavin and vitamin B12 needed for energy production, vitamin A and zinc to maintain a healthy immune system. This creamy delight not only tastes great, but has health benefits galore when eaten in moderation.
Apples: Not to state the obvious, we know the old saying “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” But, really, apples are abundant in nutrients that studies have shown protect bones, help with asthma, prevent diseases such as Alzheimer’s and cancer, lower cholesterol, manage diabetes, and cleanse the body. Remember to eat the skin, this is where many of the benefits are found as well as the fiber. The pectin works wonders, too. And this time of year is ripe for apple picking!
Walnuts: Not only yummy, walnuts are one of the best plant sources of protein. They are rich in fiber to help digestion, B vitamins, magnesium, and antioxidants such as Vitamin E to aid the immune system and promote good energy. Nuts in general are also high in plant sterols and fat – but mostly monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats (omega 3 fatty acids – the good fats) that have been shown to lower LDL cholesterol. Walnuts, in particular, have significantly higher amounts of omega 3 fatty acids as compared to other nuts, so think lubricated skin, hair, nails, and joints, as well as a healthier heart!