Thursday, June 21, 2012

The battle of the sandwiches

This has been going on for some time now.  My husband has declared himself the “King of the sandwich” and it has been annoying the hell out of me.  I love to eat sandwiches, but rarely make them.  I have to consider such things as condiments, ratio of components to bread and to each other, homemade bread vs store bought.  Then I have to consider construction, like a good architect, I have to make sure the mighty sandwich does not fall apart when cut or at first bite.  All these thoughts and considerations sway me from making this essential fast food.  But my household loves them, craves them and the chore falls to the “Sandwich king” – the self-proclaimed master of fast food.  He considers none of the above things, throws whatever he can find on whatever bread related product he can find, uses processed ingredients (agrr..) and his sandwiches come out great. 

It is rumored that the sandwich was invented in England, sometime in mid-1700’s, by John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich.  It is said that during long gambling sessions, he would ask the servants to bring him slices of meat between two pieces of bread.  It was a filling and convenient snack to eat with one hand while playing cards with the other.  It has been quite a journey for a sandwich since… think how far we’ve come from simple slices of meat to fancy lobster rolls, three, four or even five decker clubs with rare delicacies of pates or fancy cured meats.   We have the messy cheese melts, kebabs wrapped in pita, and soft Asian buns stuffed with whatever one can think of putting on a baked vessel.  There are vegetarian sandwiches, lettuce wraps instead of bread for the figure conscious, assortment of flatbreads and condiments galore.  Just browse the mustard section of your neighborhood supermarket and be amazed at how many ways you can spice up this simple food, meant to be eaten on the go with one hand.

All my attempts to dethrone the “Sandwich king” have been weak, I am convinced that I am being judged unfairly by the most bias of all judges… our kids.   After all, they have been eating my husband’s sandwiches for a long time and developed a certain loyalty to them.  He also puts bacon on everything, which I say is cheating.  But I am not giving up, the idea is to use whatever is the fridge already and turn it into greatness. 

 This particular attempt is a leftover steak and fried egg sandwich on whole grain toast with micro greens, tomatoes and a wonderful smoky and spicy sauce that can make any sandwich great. 

I do apologize for the pictures, I know they are not the best quality.

This one was a tie… this is what the “King” made, making me cringe and delighting my children.  His took 3 minutes to make, dirtied up one ramekin and he used one paper plate.  I on the other hand, broke out the skillet, a food processor for the sauce and spent a good 15 minutes on mine… all of which I endured sarcastic looks and  contempt like sounds from the “King”.

Frozen waffles with egg, cheese and bacon… mind you the egg and the bacon were cooked in the microwave.  I do not even trust a toaster to make my toast; I use the skillet as I consider the old-fashioned way makes a better toast.

After the dust settled, we decided to join forces and post our small contributions to all the sandwich makers out there…

My contribution is a
Smoked pepper and horseradish sandwich sauce.
This by the way is great as a veggie dip as well.
Makes about a cup.  This sauce keeps well in the fridge for about 10 days.

1.2 cup of roasted peppers
1.4 cup of mayo (use the Japanese kind if you got it)
1.4 cup of Greek yogurt or sour cream
1 tbs of horseradish ( if using freshly grated, start with ½ tbs and add to taste)
1 tsp of smoked paprika
A generous squeeze of lemon juice
Salt to taste

Combine all the ingredients in the food processor and pulse until smooth.

The “King’s” contribution is the best, fastest and absolutely mess free way of making delicious, crunchy bacon and soft, cheesy eggs.

If you want this to be absolutely mess free, use a paper plate. And if you are really looking to live “green” use recycled paper products.

Line a paper plate with 3 sheets of paper towels, lay out your bacon strips on top in a single layer, cover with 3 more paper towels and repeat the layering if more bacon is needed.  Top the final layer with 3 more paper towels. Microwave on high for 30 seconds multiplied by the number of strips of bacon.  For example if you are cooking 4 strips the zap time should be 2 minutes.  Check the bacon after the allotted time… if more crispiness is desired microwave in additional 30 second intervals.

For the cheesy egg, combine one beaten egg and 1 tbs of grated cheese of any kind in a microwave safe ramekin and zap for 30 seconds….

I think he should consider teaching a college “Fast food at home” to every hungry college students or to every hungry and lazy teenager…
The battle of the sandwiches is not over, I believe that in the end, complexity of flavors, taste and “gourmand” will prevail… more to come.

1 comment:

Vishnya said...

Irochka, dorogaja, s Dnem Rozhdenija Tebia!!! Zhelau pokorenija novyh kulinarnyh vershin!!! Recept super-blinov - za mnoj )))