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Hy’s Cheese Toast

Hy's cheese toast 1

Forever ago, when I was at art college, the school cafeteria sold thick slabs of cheese toast for a dollar. It was about all I could afford, which was convenient because it was also what I loved the most. Open faced grilled cheese. It reminded me of my mom’s tuna melts, minus the tuna, and my grandma’s hot dog melts on hamburger buns that would go all crackly in the oven. Cheese toast is perhaps as comforting as it’s possible to get. It doesn’t seem like the sort of thing you need a recipe for – and yet it’s so much more than just cheese on toast.

Hy’s steakhouses are known for their old-school cheese toast. Again, it’s about all I can afford – and also mostly what I want. It arrives in linen-lined silver baskets and tastes the same wherever you go – they’ve had their formula since 1955, which is evident in the ingredient list: soft butter, grated cheese, Worcestershire. They add a pinch of white pepper, too.

Hy's cheese toast 4

Really, the secret is in the butter-cheese mix. The original recipe calls for Grana Padano, Swiss and orange cheddar; I used Parm, aged Gouda and old orange cheddar. It seems to me the sort of thing you could use up those cheese ends in the fridge for – with a glug (not too much) of Worcestershire for nostalgia’s sake. And to make a perfect pairing with a spicy Caesar. You’ll need some nice, slightly squidgy white bread too – I had a couple of Julia Child’s sandwich loaves on my countertop, which is I think why inspiration struck.

Hy's cheese toast 3

And because it’s fast – you could do it in the toaster oven, one at a time, and keep the cheese mixture in the fridge for future toasts – the timing is perfect if you want to heat up a pot of tomato soup on the stove. This is my plan at the first opportunity that arises.

Hy's cheese toast 2

Hy's cheese toast 1
Hy's cheese toast 1

Hy’s Cheese Toast

Recipe link

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March 15, 2016


4 thick slices white bread

1/2 cup butter, at room temperature

1/4 cup grated Parmesan or Grana Padano

1/4 cup grated aged Gouda or Swiss

1/3 cup grated old cheddar

a few drops of Worcestershire


1Preheat the broiler. Place the bread slices on a baking sheet and toast them in the oven for 5-10 minutes, or until golden.


3Meanwhile, stir together the butter, cheeses and Worcestershire. Take the toasted bread out of the oven, flip them over, and spread the butter-cheese mixture thickly over the untoasted side. Return to the oven for another 5-10 minutes, until the cheese is bubbly and the toast is golden around the edges.


5Cut into whatever sized pieces you like and serve immediately. Serves 4.


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5 comments on “Hy’s Cheese Toast

  1. Jennifer Jo
    March 16, 2016 at 8:32 am

    Suggestion: add chopped, raw bacon and some horseradish. In the oven, the bacon cooks and the fat fries the bread. SO good. http://www.jennifermurch.com/2015/02/cheesy-bacon-toasts.html

  2. Carol S-B
    March 16, 2016 at 10:15 pm

    “Serves four”?
    Ba ha ha!
    Umm, you’re right. I would never polish off the lot all by myself.

  3. Mara
    March 17, 2016 at 1:54 pm

    Help. I am a ludite but do enjoy your blog and Instagram posts everyday. Today, Instagram made me sign up and now I can not get past them/the photo to see what you are saying about the photo. My usual techies, my kids, are not with me. Thanks.

  4. Beverley
    March 25, 2016 at 3:42 pm

    Why have I not seen this recipe cross my feed before? (Feed, ha, no pun intended) Now I need to make chocolate macaroon nests AND cheese toast. :)

  5. Anonymous
    August 6, 2016 at 6:07 pm

    Thanks very much for this. Hy’s at home!

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