It’s about 11 p.m. and I’m sitting in the library doing some extreme cramming since finals are just a couple days away. My friends have gone home and I’m just sitting here looking around taking a break from all these numbers and words. A group of students sit at my table and bust out their huge sandwiches while I sit here with my earphones blasting music, pretending I can’t smell their delicious sandwiches. Since I’m trying to clear my head, I’ve decided to write a random post, ode to sandwiches.
The first recorded sandwich was by Hillel the Elder, who put nuts, spices, apples, and wine inbetween some matzo (what I like to call cardboard bread) and was eaten with bitter herbs. This was the start of our typical sandwich inbetween two slices of bread. In the middle ages, meats and other foods were piled on top of blocks of stale bread, using the bread as a plate. The juices from the food would be absorbed by the bread and many times, the leftover plate of bread would be given to the less fortunate, thus inventing the open faced sandwich.
My, have times changed! There are so many great sandwich places here in the bay area. Just to name a few, Lou’s in the Richmond District of San Francisco makes a mean Turkey Cranberry Sandwich, Ike’s Place in Castro area of San Francisco who has catchy names like “Menage a trois” and “We Are Just Friends,” and then there’s Freshly Baked Eatery in San Jose where just about anything tastes good inbetween their fresh sourdough bread.
Pastrami from Freshly Baked Eatery
The sandwich is becoming a very modern food and is popping up everywhere, like the recent fad of food trucks. All sorts of food trucks are taking the meats of their ethnic food and shoving them between bread rolls, which I’m not complaining about. My sister’s favorite is the spicy pork sandwich from Seoul On Wheels.
Nowadays, having fresh, warm, soft bread is one of the key components in having a delicious sandwich. I don’t think the people in the Middle Ages would be giving their leftover breads to the less fortunate if they were eating what we’re eating today. I’d rather give the less fortunate the meats than my yummy sauce soaked bread! Nom nom nom.
Shrimp Po’boy from Sam’s Chowder Mobile
Look at that huge bun! It was soft in the middle and slightly crispy on the outside
Sandwiches are great for taking on the go. Everytime my friends and I go hiking, we stop by a sandwich shop to pick up some sammies. We make sure we get the most delicious sandwiches and after hiking for two hours, all we look forward to is sinking our teeth into our sandwich before we start making our way down again. They’re so convenient, easy to make, an are filling.
If you want to sit down to have some brunch, eating open faced sandwiches are the way to go with some orange juice or a cup of strong coffee. I came across a local brunch spot called Outerlands. Everything on their menu is extremely simple, but done right. Ever since eating there, I’ve been making a similar sandwich at home; over easy egg with cheese and tomato sitting on top of some sourdough bread and popped in the oven, served with a salad with homemade dressing. ZINGGGG!!
I personally make a sandwich almost everyday for lunch. For the past two years, I’ve totally cut out mayonnaise and am always on the lookout for replacements, such as hummus, mustards, and spreads. Of course, I’ve found a new found love, introduced by my second boyfriend, Trader Joe. Let me tell you… if you love garlic and don’t mind mustard, you will LOVE this! Aioli. Garlic. Mustard. Sauce. Wowowowowowowowowow. Just a tiiiiiny bit is needed as a little goes a long way.
It goes with almost every sandwich I’ve made! Lately, I’ve been on this turkey cranberry hype. Too bad WL hates the tarty-sweetness and meat combo.
He’d enjoy this soooo much if he really enjoyed the combo. Oh well, but he’s missing out. More for me! I’ve also found loads of canned tuna in the house and a light smear of this sauce across one side of the bread with some tuna salad makes all the difference in the world! Here are a couple sandwiches I’ve been eating as of late.
servings: 2 funsized sandwiches
1 can of tuna (I use Chicken of the Sea. No, it ain’t chicken)
2 heaping Tbsp. greek yogurt
half a stalk of celery, minced
1 tsp. minced red onion
1 boiled egg, diced
2 turns of cracked pepper
sprinkle of salt (optional)
and anything else you like to add into your tuna, such as sweet relish.
some type of green; lettuce, sprouts, microgreens
4 slices of bread (I like to use my cardboard 100 calorie wheat bread. Toast it slightly and it’s actually not that bad)
2 tsp. aioli garlic mustard sauce
Put an egg into a small pot and fill the pot up with water until the water comes up to just above the egg. Heat the water of medium high heat. Once the water starts to boil, turn off the heat and don’t touch the pot for 8 minutes.
Pour out the hot water and replace the hot water with cold. Put aside.
While waiting for the egg to cool, open your can of tuna and put it in a small bowl. Throw in the yogurt, onion, celery, salt & pepper and whatever else you want in it and stir until combined. Deshell the egg and dice it up. I used this handy egg cutter thing.
Open Faced Egg Sandwich
servings: 1 delicious open-faced sandwich
2 slices of a big tomato, such as steak tomatoes or heirlooms
Dill havarti cheese
1 thick slice crusty sourdough
serve with a light leafy green salad
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Cut 2 slices of tomato and place them on your bread. Slice some havarti cheese with dill and create a thin layer of cheese on top of the tomato and put in the oven. Bake until the bread is crispy and the cheese is melted.
While the bread is baking, fry an egg. I like over easy. When your bread is done baking, lay the fried egg on top of the tomato and cheese. Don’t worry about it being dry. As the tomato is baking, it releases liquid and seeps into the bread. The center of the bread absorbs the liquid, leaving it slightly soggy in the middle, but a very crispy crust around the edges. Serve with salad.
This salad and its dressing is a perfect pairing with this sandwich. The dressing is very light and slightly fruity and compliments the dill in the cheese. Add some cubes of cucumber for that added crunch and take a bite with some of the sandwich, a piece of cucumber, and lettuce! Enjoy.
Orange & Basil Dressing
1/4 c. orange juice
1/4 c. white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp. dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. orange zest
1/4 tsp. salt
1 c. light olive oil
1 handful of fresh basil
Place all ingredients but the oil and basil into a blender. Turn on the blender and slowly add the oil. Add the basil and blend until smooth with no large pieces of basil.