Slice of bread, toasted on both sides, coated with grated or sliced cheese (typically Cheddar, Lancashire or Wensleydale ) and grilled until the cheese melts. Walsh 1859 has, "Mix some fine butter, made mustard, and salt into a mass; spread it on fresh-made thin toasts, and grate or scrape Gloucester cheese upon them." This is not the same dish as rarebit.
For an early version, see: Savoury Toast
For fancier versions, see Rarebit
Cheese on Toast
Original Receipt from 'The English Cookery Book' edited by JH Walsh Walsh 1859;
1142. Lay a slice of cheese on toasted bread buttered on both sides; put it to the fire, and, when the cheese begins to toast, mix some beer, pepper, and salt, and pour over it. The beer should be sufficient to moisten the bread.
Toasted Cheese To Come Up After Dinner.
1143. Grate three ounces of fat Cheshire cheese, mix it with the yolks of two eggs, four ounces of grated bread, and three ounces of butter; beat the whole well in a mortar with a dessert-spoonful of mustard, and a little salt and pepper. Toast some bread, cut it into proper pieces, lay the paste, as above, thick upon them into a Dutch oven, covered with a dish, till hot through; remove the dish, and let the cheese brown a little. Serve as hot as possible.
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