This is truly a glorious week for Reddit’s 52 Weeks of Cooking, because it focuses on the sandwich! My love of sandwiches as a food marvel cannot be overstated, especially given how many of them I’ve posted here.
The sandwich is truly one of the most wonderful of food delivery mechanisms, as well as the most versatile. Though he wasn’t the inventor, the sandwich was given its most commonly used name by the John Montagu, the 4th Earl of Sandwich, who popularized the food item as a way to eat without needing to take a break from playing cards back in the day (Source: Sesame Street, Wikipedia.)
Since then, and indeed before then, people have been enjoying sandwiches and will probably still be enjoying them long into the future so long as there is bread and things to put inside of it.
I think one of the better things about sandwiches is that you can make so many different kinds of them. They can be big productions such as a homemade roast beef sandwich, simple quick affairs with store-bought bread and packaged ham and cheese, or fancy holiday affairs like the Thanksgiving Sandwich.
A Thanksgiving Sandwich.
It was a bit tempting to simply repost my original sandwich which I used to audition for the MasterChef competition, the Winston, but seeing as how easy it is to make a new sandwich, such a temptation was easily brushed aside.
Here, we are showcasing the sandwiches ability to transform leftovers into a new and delicious taste sensation. Leftovers from my mother’s special birthday meal, baked salmon with bell pepper and capers, are used here to great effect.
What we have are the chilled cooked fish, along with the vegetables baked along with it.
And two of my favorite accoutrements to a sandwich, homemade aioli (inside the repurposed ricotta cheese container) and good mustard.
See, homemade aioli! Hrm, not the best shot.
Here we go, aioli, back when I whipped it up. So beautifully glossy and garlicky.
A bit lazy so I didn’t bake my own bread, but that would have been truly divine. But still, good sliced wheat is always a winner for me.
Ah yeah, I toast my sandwich bread. I’m not sure if that makes me weird or not. I remember once in elementary school some kid thought I was gross for toasting my bread for my ham sandwiches. To that random kid somewhere, I say shove off, a man’s (or any kids) bread choices are his own!
Spread with mayo and mustard. Notice that I wiped the knife free of mayo on the right. Another great thing about sandwiches, no one would be the wiser of this rather messy move if you didn’t tell them. I’m too honest for my own good.
Can’t forget the capers and bell peppers.
I broke up the fish into pieces and laid them atop the peppers, then sprinkled a bit more fine sea salt on the fish, to bring out the flavor a bit more. Such seasoning is a bit more necessary, as you need slightly more aggressive seasoning on more subtly flavored and bread does take away the impact from its fillings.
There we go, all assembled and ready to eat.
Verdict? Delicious. The seasoning proved a good move, and the bell peppers are a fantastic substitution for fresh sliced tomatoes, offering a nice chew and a bit of resistance to the bite. I wish I had more to use. Lessons learned.
I’ll throw in a bonus sandwich to display just how fancy/creative/lazy you can be in the assembly of sandwiches. Remember the gougeres? Cheesy baked pastry puff things? Happens that I still had a few left over.
Here is one freshly toasted in the toaster oven to give it a bit of crispness and heat.
Then split it in half, hamburger bun style. Freshly toasted, the insides have softened a bit, almost creamy yet still with that cheesy flavor of Parmagiano-Reggiano.
Baked salmon mashed with a fork into some aioli is then spread upon one side.
Then folded over and eaten. The savory cheesiness of the gougere and the creaminess of the salmon blend wonderfully together.
Sandwiches. So easy, and so damn good.