Saturday, March 6, 2010

Sandwich Heaven

IMG_7409_1 I say, when you don’t have time to make dinner, make sandwiches.

No, I’m not talking about PB&J or ham and cheese (although there may be days when this is perfectly acceptable), but real sandwiches. The kind where you pretend you’re eating a picnic in some French countryside with your love. And no kids in sight.

Except that you have kids, and your spouse is coming home late tonight, and there’s no way you can fix dinner with your daughter pulling on your pant leg because she’s bored.

So you make sandwiches.

We had sandwiches twice this week. I asked Jake to pick up 2 loaves of garlic sourdough because I wasn’t even going to bother baking bread. Un-uh. No way.

The ingredients are important. Real tomatoes—the kind that you can see the red all the way through, preferably local. Brie cheese. Roasted peppers. Garlic cloves. But these ingredients need no dressing up—they’re fabulous without much work.

Everyone assembles their own the way they like it. My daughter stuck with brie on a slice, with a few tomatoes and lettuce on the side. We tricked her into eating roasted pepper by telling her it was a baked tangerine (why this made sense to her, I’ll never know).

The second night we ate sandwiches I sliced up some sausage and heated them up in a pan for the hub and girl, and sliced some cold tofu for myself. I made my sandwich based on my Vegan friend’s favorite sandwich (he was drooling just telling me the assembly). I ate three in no time at all.

The best part? No dishes, except the ones we ate on.

IMG_7416_1 Roasted Veggie w/ Brie (serves 4)

  • 12 thin slices of sourdough bread (or other bakery bread)
  • 12 slices of brie cheese (rind removed if you prefer)
  • 2 yellow, red, or orange bell peppers
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • sliced tomatoes
  • sliced avocado
  • balsamic vinegar
  • olive oil
  1. Preheat oven to 370 degrees. Put a piece of parchment paper on a cookie sheet. Cut bell peppers in half. Remove seeds. Place bell pepper halves cut side down. Rub or brush the outside with a bit of olive oil.
  2. Separate garlic cloves and rub with olive oil as well; also place on cookie sheet.
  3. Bake until peppers are soft and skins are browned. Remove from oven and place bell peppers in a plastic bag for a few minutes to sweat the skins. Remove skins. Cut peppers in half again.
  4. Serve vinegar and oil on the side and assemble sandwiches (sandwich pictured has: roasted garlic spread on bread, tomato, avocado, roasted pepper, brie, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.)

IMG_7423 Vegan Lover (makes 3 open faced sandwiches)

  • 3 thin slices of firm tofu
  • nutritional yeast (about 1/4 C)
  • 1 T olive oil
  • sea salt (fine ground) to taste
  • 3 Tbsp hummus
  • sliced avocado
  • sliced tomato
  • 1 Tbsp Ume plum vinegar (or other vinegar if you don’t have)
  • 1/2 C radish sprouts
  • 3 lettuce leaves
  • 3 slices of good quality bakery bread

Assembly. Split ingredients into 3 servings. On top of 1 slice of bread layer the ingredients as follows: drizzle olive oil, sprinkle salt, spread hummus, press avocado slices, sprinkle yeast to taste, place tomato slices, sprinkle more yeast, place tofu slice, sprinkle more yeast, place sprouts, drizzle ume plum vinegar, top with lettuce leaf.

Note: nutritional yeast is VERY good. It’s salty and light tasting. I keep it around for vegan cooking, but I often add it whatever I’m cooking (soup, stew, sandwiches, etc) to give a little savory flavor. My closest comparison is chicken bouillon in flavor, but not really like that. You can find it easily at a natural foods market, often in the bulk section. They look like yellow flakes and melt very easily on the tongue.

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