Tag Archives: sandwich

Egg and Asparagus Open Faced Sandwiches on Rye

“Oh!” they proclaim.  Eggs and asparagus are the absolute taste of Spring.  Eggs and asparagus are the quinsential coupling of the season.  “They” said so, but I had not indulged.

In my world, eggs and asparagus belong in completely different groups.  Asparagus is in the Prepare it Simply and Resist Any Urge to Add Anything That is Clearly Not Necessary group.  Also in this group are steaks, salmon, peaches, and blueberries.  Eggs are in the Salsa Always Served With This category.  Other items in this group are tortilla chips, and, well, eggs.

In the end, the rye bread did add a bit of oomf to this dish.  The eggs are basically deviled eggs without the relish with the egg whites minced ever so sweetly.  Its a nice little Sunday brunch kind of thing while totally breaking all of my previous rules.

Egg and Asparagus Open Faced Sandwiches on Rye

Ingredients:

  • 7 eggs, boiled and peeled
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 TBS parsley finely chopped (optional)
  • salt and pepper
  • 8 slices thinly sliced rye or other dark bread, cut in half
  • 8 spears asparagus

Directions:

  1. Halve eggs, put the yolks in a bowl and mince the whites.  To the yolks, add the mayonnaise and dijon mustard.  Mix, and fold in whites, then parsely if desired.  Salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Set a pot of salted water to boil while slicing the asparagus spears into thirds.  Place asparagus into boiling water for 2 minutes, drain in a collander and rinse with cold water until cool.  If the spears are thick, cut each in half lengthwise.
  3. Lightly toast the bread under the broiler, then top with egg mixture and top with 2 pieces of asparagus.

Notes:

  • These are oh, so pretty.
  • The main idea here is the egg spread, asparagus, and bread.  Play with the parts as you see fit.
  • Rye bread was one of those foods I just decided that I didn’t like as a kid.  Then one day I took a personal field trip to Berkeley’s Gourmet Ghetto and had a pastrami on rye at Saul‘s.  Life changing!
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Spice of Life Vegetarian Sandwiches

How do you know that your sandwich totally rocks?  Why, of course, by sitting down at the lunch table at work, pulling out a sandwich that is technically a left over from dinner the night before, and coworkers’ jaws dropping with jealousy.  Fortunately, I work with a healthy bunch who all love a good meal.  Lunch discussions are more about current events, political ideology, local foods, and our profession in general, than anything found in People magazine or at TMZ.  Personally, this suits me well.

Back to the sandwich.  This little ditty is a breeze to make.  Simply combine the marinade ingredients and sliced veggies in a zip-lock bag and leave it on the counter.  Take a break from that amazing challenging task (tee-hee) while the marinade does its magic.  Finally, do a quick cook in the pan, assemble, and devour.  This is not the “oh my goodness, this IS spicy” kind of spicy like the grilled vegetable sandwich recipe, but rather the sweet on the front of the tongue followed by a delightful slow burn in the back of the mouth kind of spicy.

Spice of Life Vegetarian Sandwiches

makes 4 sandwiches

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 tsp each: salt, thyme, cinnamon, allspice, cayenne pepper, Chinese 5 spice powder, ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 zucchini, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
  • 1/2 medium red onion, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 1 large red bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 teaspoon light mayonnaise
  • 8  slices  French bread
  • Mozzarella or Jack cheese slices
  • basil leaves

Directions:

  • Combine spices, vinegar and oil in a large zip-top plastic bag and mix together. Add zucchini, onion, bell pepper,seal and shake well to coat. Let stand 30 minutes, or refrigerate overnight.
  • Heat a skillet over medium high heat.  Coat with cooking spray.  Dump the contents of the bag into the pan and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes.
  • Preheat broiler.
  • Divide sauteed vegetables among 4 french bread slices.  Top each with a slice of cheese.  Broil until cheese softens, about 1 minute.  Add remaining bread slices to the baking sheet and broil for 1 more minute or until the cheese melts and the bread browns, then lightly spread with mayonnaise.  Top cheese with basil leaves and toasted bread.

Notes:

  • Feel free to be pretty flexible with the veggies in here.  Any kind of squash or some eggplant would be perfect.
  • I totally like to snack on left overs.  These veggies are best in sandwiches and just don’t work well with casual “let me nibble on a few bites of zucchini” snacking style.
  • There are just enough juices to soak into the bread, providing some extra love.
  • If you clicked over to the grilled vegetable sandwich, you’ll notice how much the palm trees in the back yard have grown over the years.  There are 3 palms, with one of the three being a trio itself.  When we bought them about 5 years ago, they all fit in the back of our SUV.  Believe it or not!

Smoked Pulled Pork with Carolina BBQ Sauce

We’re stretching out the summer.  Hanging out on the back deck.  Making sure we get out and walk while the weather is good.  Getting those tomatoes from the farm stands that we waited oh so long for.   If you can handle stretching out the planning and preparation of a meal, yet don’t want to do too terribly much actual work, this is for you.

The pork for the sandwiches is brined, smoked, pulled and finally doused with a zesty vinegary sauce before being piled high on a soft bun.  We are talking some serious piggy love here!  If you haven’t brined anything before, this is a perfect time to give it a try.  Brining simply involves heating flavorful liquid, cooling the liquid, and soaking the meat in the liquid before cooking.  Yes, it stretches out the cooking process but is certainly not difficult.  If you don’t have a smoker at home, you can use a slow cooker (8 hours on low) for meat with the same texture minus some smokin’ love.   And speaking of stretching, that’s what you’ll need to do after devouring this amazing sandwich.

This sandwich was adapted from a restaurant recipe provided by The Oinkster on Food Network.

Print versions:  BBQ pulled pork sandwiches Carolina BBQ sauce

Smoked Pulled Pork

Ingredients:

  • 5 – 6 pound pork butt
  • 2 gallons water
  • 1 ½ cup salt
  • 2 cups soy sauce
  • ¼ cup honey
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • ½ cup sugar

Directions:

1. Boil 1 gallon water with salt, soy sauce, honey, molasses and sugar. Add remaining 1 gallon of water. Cool.

2. Add pork, cover and set in a refrigerator 12 to 24 hours.

3. Let pork drain on cooling racks and come to room temperature. Smoke over applewood chips at 250 degrees for 5 to 8 hours until the internal temperature of the pork reaches 170 degrees.

4. Use forks to pull the pork into pieces. Douse with Carolina sauce and serve on soft buns.

Carolina BBQ Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1 qt apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 TBS red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 TBS dry mustard
  • 2 TBS worcestershire sauce
  • 2 TBS molasses
  • 2 TBS tomato paste
  • 2 TBS soy sauce
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan, bring to a boil over medium heat, simmer for 10 minutes.

Notes:

  • How good is this?  We made it twice in the same week,  first on the smoker and later in the slow cooker.  While the slow cooker didn’t have that luscious smoky flavor, the texture of the meat was still wonderful and the BBQ sauce added the needed Carolina flavor.
  • After making the sandwiches, I finally went to The Oinkster’s web site and saw the sandwich they made for Diners, Drive Ins and Drives.  Oh my!  They top the pork with slowly cooked onions and red cabbage slaw.  It is a beauty to behold.

A Nice Little Roasted Veggie Sandwich

Everyone seems to be into this 30 minute meal craze.  The goal in this race is to see how quickly a person can get dinner on the table.  Bonus points are awarded for a well balanced meal.  Double bonus points go to using fresh ingredients in the 30 minute well balanced meal.  Triple points are awarded to doing all that without using half the pots and pans in your kitchen!  To be frank, I’ve tried a few of these and been disappointed.  But, I have learned a few tricks from the ever present Rachael Ray and Cooking Light’s Fresh Food Fast book.  Here we go, in no particular order:

  • keep it simple
  • add a punch of flavor somewhere
  • grill whenever possible

This little weeknight sammie lives up to all three tricks.  First, its a sandwich, which keeps it simple.  The Parmesan mayo with a healthy dose of garlic punches up the flavor and could easily be reworked into a dip.  And finally, keeping a gas grill right outside our kitchen makes year round grilling a breeze.  Several of the Cooking Light recipes have you spritz some salad spritzer on the veggies before grilling, and this is easily one of the best little secrets ever.  Its like the perfect little flavorizer in a spray bottle, and I have used that shortcut year round with great success on all kinds of grilled veggies.

Grilled Portobello Sandwich with Parmesan Mayonnaise

makes 4 sandwiches

Ingredients:

2 Portobello mushrooms

1 red bell pepper

4 lettuce leaves

Balsamic salad spritzer

8 slices sourdough bread

1/2 cup Parmesan mayonnaise

Parmesan Mayonnaise

1/2 cup light mayonnaise

2 cloves garlic, pressed

2 TBS grated Parmesan cheese

2 TBS red onion, minced

1/4 tsp black pepper

Directions:

1.  Heat grill or broiler.

2.  Prepare Parmesan mayonnaise by combining the light mayo, garlic, Parmesan, onion, and black pepper in a bowl.  Refrigerate.

3.  Remove stems from mushrooms and spray bottoms of caps with balsamic spritzer.

4.  Place mushrooms on the grill.  Turn after 7 minutes, or when browned and tender.  Remove from grill, and slice into 1/2 inch sections.

5.  Assemble sandwiches by spreading 1 tablespoon Parmesan mayonnaise onto each bread slice.  On 4 of the bread slices, layer portobello mushroom slices, red bell pepper sections, lettuce leafs, and top with the other pieces of bread.

Notes:

  • This Parmesan mayonnaise is really, really good!
  • To roast a bell pepper, place it on the grill over direct heat and turn when each side chars.  When all sides are charred, place the bell pepper in a plastic bag, twist the top of the bag to seal in the heat, and let it sit for ten minutes.  Finally, take the bell pepper out of the bag and slide the charred skin off the sides and remove the stem and seeds.  Cut into sections.
  • You can use what ever type of sandwich bread you choose of course.  Sourdough is simply my favorite.
  • Grilling the bread gives an extra bit of love to the sandwich.
  • Yes, roasted red bell peppers are available in jars in the store.  But … I’m just too frugal to spend 6 bucks on peppers.
  • This is easily adapted to making under the broiler.

Turkey Salad Sandwich on Cranberry Bread

Count me in on fans of leftover turkey.  Really now, the reason for cooking a bird really is for those second and third meals.  Especially sandwiches.

Christmas dinner was a several family affair this year.  We LOVE this time together, and decided to share with a few more families which tripled the number of people at our tables.  The Big Deal of this feast is always the amazing prime rib prepared by my husband.  But, with so many at our table this year, we decided to add a deep fried turkey.  That meant left over turkey with lovely crispy skin bits.  Oh, yum!

While I wouldn’t deep fry a turkey just for this sandwich, making or purchasing cranberry bread is a must.  That cranberry bread puts this over the top!

Ingredients:

6 cups turkey meat, roughly chopped

4 hard boiled eggs

6 oz sweet gherkin pickles, chopped

1 stalk celery, chopped

2TBS Dijon mustard

3/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup light sour cream

Lettuce leaves

Cranberry bread

Directions:

1.  Peel the hard boiled eggs, remove the yolk from two of the eggs, and roughly chop.

2.  In a mixing bowl, mix together Dijon mustard, mayonnaise, and light sour cream.  Add the chopped turkey, hard boiled eggs, sweet pickles and celery and mix gently.

3.  Toast 2 slices of cranberry bread.

4.  Spread turkey salad mixture on the toasted cranberry bread, top with 2 leaves of lettuce and cover with the remaining slice of bread.

Notes:

  • The cranberry bread was made by my mom.  Thanks mom!
  • This is based on the Annie’s Turkey Salad recipe on AllRecipes.
  • Removing the yolks from half of the hard boiled eggs is just my habit.  I like the texture of the egg whites but don’t want too much yolk to muck up the texture of the salad in the end.
  • The overall flavor profile of this is of turkey first, with a few light add ins.  Some people will prefer a more even proportion of add ins to meat.
  • With the hearty bread and meaty filling, just half of the sandwich makes a perfect lunch.

Grilled Vegetable Sandwich

Grilled Vegetable Sandwiches have been a “go to” recipe in our family for years now. The basics of it originate from the book In the Kitchen With Rosie published back in 1994. Rosie is the spa chef that Oprah hired to cook for her at home several diets ago. This is one of those books that I use sometimes for specific recipes, sometimes for lower fat cooking methods in general, and sometimes for a good laugh. I firmly believe that there are some foods that just need to be enjoyed in their full fat version, then we just adapt from there with other light meals during the week or enjoying smaller portions. Somehow many people find those concepts way out there, hence the spa cuisine. Ha!

Below is my adaptation, based on what I tend to have in the fridge and the veggies currently available during the summer. The tomato and lettuce can be omitted, and I just include them when the mood strikes me right. But the basil … that is a must!

Don’t let the long list of ingredients frighten you away. This is a really simple meal! Just toss the dressing ingredients in a blender, and that is done. Slice and grill veggies with a bit of spice, and that is done. Just assemble the sandwiches from there and enjoy! Warning: these are gooey, veggies smooshing out of the sides, drippy sandwiches! Mmmmmmmmmmm.

Dressing:

1/4 cup mayo

1/2 cup light sour cream

3 TBS dijon mustard

1/8 tsp Crystal sauce (or Tobasco)

2 green onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, chopped

1 tsp lemon juice

Sandwich:

1 small eggplant, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds

1 yellow squash, sliced lenthwise into 1/4 inch strips

1 zucchini, sliced lenthwise into 1/4 inch strips

1 red onion, trimmed and cut into 1/4 inch rounds

3 tsp Italian seasoning (or just some basil / oregano if that is what’s handy)

1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

cooking spray

2 bell peppers, roasted and skins removed, sliced into strips

1 french bread baguette

1 tomato, cored and sliced (optional)

8 fresh basil leaves

8 arugula leaves, or other mixed green leaves

2 TBS jalapeño, sliced

black pepper to taste

Dressing instructions:

1. Put all ingredients in a blender or food processor, and mix at low speed until smooth. The dressing will be a bit thin, but don’t worry.

Sandwich instructions:

1. To each of the eggplant, squash, zucchini, and onion slices, add a bit of oil to each side and dust lightly with Italian seasonings and cayenne pepper. Grill on a hot grill, about 3 minutes per side. These veggies should look a little black around the edges. Trust me, this is good.

2. Cut 1 inch off each end of the baguette. Slice it lengthwise so that the sides remain connected, then cut into 4 portions. Open the baguette and use your fingers to scoop out most of the bread. Grill lightly.

3. Assemble sandwiches by pouring dressing on the top and bottom of each baguette, they layering on the roasted vegetables, tomato, basil, arugula and jalapeño.