A petty melt is the delicious result of smashing together a burger and a grilled cheese; decadent, buttery and over the top. This is ultimate comfort food. It’s unclear who invented the patty melt, but there are records of them being served all the way back to the 1940’s.
Traditionally, a patty melt is served with American, Swiss or Cheddar cheese and caramelized onions on slices of rye or sourdough bread. I like American since it melts so beautifully and I add provolone cheese for the stringiness. I enjoy both sourdough and rye bread, but in a pinch I have used plain white bread and the sandwich is still a winner.
For the caramelized onions, I like to use a mix of red and sweet onion. I like the mix of colors and the different sweetness the two onion varieties impart. I like to partially caramelize the onions; I don’t cook them down to dark brown onion jam. I leave them browned but still with a little body. It takes less time (and so I get to eat my sandwich sooner) and I like the texture more.
I do think the mayo sauce is a must in this sandwich; it adds moistness and tang and really puts this sandwich over the top. Serve it up with some bread and butter pickles, sliced tomato and potato chips and you have got yourself one heck of a meal.
1 pound ground beef, 80-20
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 1/2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 small red onion
1 small sweet onion
4 slices sourdough or rye bread
3 tablespoons butter, plus more for sandwiches
Slices of american, swiss, cheddar, or provolone cheese
4 tablespoons mayo
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 1/2 teaspoons spicy brown mustard
1 tablespoon sweet relish
Mix together the mayo, ketchup, mustard and relish. Set aside.
Slice the onions into thin half moons. In a large cast iron skillet over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter. Add in the onions, pepper and a pinch of salt. Cook until the onions are beginning to caramelize; about 15 minutes. Set aside.
Meanwhile, combine the ground beef, Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder and mix to combine. Dive into 4 portions and shape into rectangular patties.
Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in the cast iron skillet over medium high heat and fry the patties for 2 minutes on each side, forming a golden brown crust. Remove the fat from the skillet.
Build the sandwich: Spread butter on the outside of the sandwich, then spend in in-facing bread slices with the mayo mixture. Follow with a slice of your choice of cheese. Then add a patty, top with onions, another pice of cheese, and the bread lid.
In the skillet over medium heat, grill the sandwiches until golden brown, about 2 minutes a side. Remove the melts to a plate, slice diagonally and enjoy!