I’ve been thinking about sandwiches, and their endless variety. There is something about the simplicity. A meal in your hand.
The BLT is probably my favorite sandwich. There are so many variations and details that can be adjust, the possibilities for this treat are endless. For me there are some basics that apply to any permutation of the sandwich I might make.
The bacon must be fully cooked, with a nice ‘tooth’, but not be crunchy. The tomato, thin enough to avoid adding too much moisture but thick enough to be firm. A crisp lettuce, of course, and bread toasted until crisp on the outside, while still soft in the center. I tend to be a bit of a purist in that I use a “white” bread for the most part.
Now, I do I like to mix it up. Mostly, I will just change the spread or dressing I use. A nice blue cheese dressing on the bread and sprinkle the bacon with a blackening spice blend before cooking it. Try whisking a bit of maple syrup and salt into some mayonnaise. Changing the greens, of course, can make a world of difference. Spicy arugula, or smooth butter lettuce are a nice change.
I also like thinly sliced smoked turkey on a sandwich. On a baguette with a spicy honey mustard, thinly sliced apples and Gruyere cheese. Of course, bacon can be a great addition to a turkey sandwich as well, I am sure I didn’t need to tell you that. I like to blend a bunch of balsamic vinegar into a mayonnaise or aioli and use it as a spread on turkey.
In the hot category, I enjoy a good Reuben, with pastrami, there is something about that sandwich that just satisfies. I used to frequent a bar in Denver that made an awesome Reuben. They did it right, grilling each slice of pastrami individually, assembling them onto lightly toasted rye bread. The bread was spread with a thin layer of 1,000 island dressing, on both sides, so when the thick slice of swiss was added and the whole sandwich was pressed on the grill for a moment, the sauce would crisp and flavor the bread. The perfect compliment to a cold pilsner.
Finally, the last but not the least in my top sandwiches list is a grilled vegetable sandwich I make using a crispy baguette. I cut yellow squash and zucchini lengthwise, split a red pepper in quarters, slice some red onion sprinkle the lot with olive oil, vinegar and salt and pepper. I grill the vegetables or roast them in the oven until they just begin to soften. I’ll let them cool and put them on the baguette with slices of fresh mozzarella and a bit more vinegar and oil.
Hope this short article gave you some ideas for sandwiches of your own. I’d love to hear from people about a variation of any of the above mentioned items that they enjoy. as always, Don’t be afraid of your kitchen!