Monday, March 31, 2008

WPP, Take 2 Wrap-up

Last Thursday I managed to pull together the ingredients for the perfect prosciutto and fig jam panini while stumbling out of the house way too early after way too little sleep. Stupid maple syrup.
By lunch time I was sufficiently awake to assemble prosciutto, brie, arugula and fig jam on ciabatta and press it in the panini maker. Ethan joined me in this endeavor and declared the combination to be pretty much perfect. At last! Insert angels singing here.

I do believe I have gotten the fig jam and prosciutto monkey off my back. At least for now.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

March Madness, Part 2

I am talking about basketball this time.
I followed the following method while picking my NCAA bracket. I googled the name of the school and best sandwich. Then I noted the first sandwich that came up. Then I placed the sandwiches head to head and decided which one sounded better to me. That decided the winner of the game for my purposes. For example, in the match-up of Memphis (barbecue) and UT Arlington (pastrami). I had to go with Memphis. It is a barbecue capital. I love a pastrami sandwich, but what would one from Texas be like? My ultimate winner was Georgetown, flying high on the merits of the Chicken Madness sandwich.
Sadly, basketball games are decided on quality of play, rather than sandwiches. The only team I still have is Memphis (barbecue). Which should beat out UNC (baloney), Kansas (Chik-fil-a), and UCLA (sub) if I have anything to say about it!

March Madness

And I'm not talking about basketball.
I'm talking about our decision to tap the enormous silver maple tree in our backyard for sap so we could boil it down for syrup. The good news? It works! And it tastes really good.
The bad news? It takes 5-6 hours to boil down a 5 gallon bucket's worth of sap. We've collected 4 full buckets since last Wednesday. And we currently have about 10 cups of syrup to show for it.
We are also going to have an elevated gas company bill to show for it since we've been boiling it down on our stove top. At least our house is well humidified!
Also, don't start boiling 5 gallons of sap at 8:00 PM. For you will be sad and cranky the next day.
So that's my excuse for not blogging about sandwiches!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

WPP, Take 2

I didn't quite finish everything I had to do at the warehouse last week. Which means more warehouse panini parties!
Today's was quiet--just Ethan, Dan and me. Ethan got a prosciutto sub from Buon Giorno, then added some of Dan's fig jam and brie to it. He said it was a little too salty. But he's not complaining.
Dan got a torpedo roll from Buon Giorno and put brie, provolone and fig jam on it. Yum! I made a sandwich from white bread, leftover Easter ham, Swiss cheese and honey mustard. It was quite delicious and I'm not usually a ham and Swiss kind of girl.
Tomorrow is definitely the last WPP for a while. Sniff. I got some ciabatta and brie. I still have prosciutto and arugula. And Dan still has fig jam. I can make that sandwich again. It's not a monkey on my back. Plus, this time I have brie!

Sunday, March 23, 2008


I was in the neighborhood yesterday, so I stopped at Maverick's for sandwiches. Based on Amy's suggestion I chose the pulled pork. Yummy! I added pickles, tangy barbecue sauce and horseradish to complement it. It is definitely my new favorite sandwich there. I got the French dip for Beth. She gave that the thumbs up as well. I forgot to get a bite from her, as I was terribly distracted by my own sandwich. But I did sample the jus and it is incredible. Next time...

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Warehouse Panini Party Wrap-up

What a fine week. Yesterday finished with a shared platter of paninis. The paninis I tried included: Kate's salami, pesto, spinach, mozzarella and tomato on white; cheddar, brie, Branton's pickle and yellow mustard on 12 grain; bacon, brie and honey on sourdough; and brie and Branston's pickle on egg bagel.
Fantastic. Thanks to everyone for embracing the panini party! Paninis taste better when you eat them with friends.
Look for another day of WPP next week, possibly Wednesday...

Friday, March 21, 2008

WPP Day 4 and 5

First of all, the brie, honey and prosciutto sandwiches were awesome. Joe made fun of me for making too much noise while I ate. Guess I should have gotten a room yesterday. Other highlights from day 4 included Janna making three paninis. She was hungry. And her last one was one slice of white bread, spread with honey, folded in half and pressed. Yum.

Day 5 is in progress! Kate came! She brought salami, tomato, mozzarella, spinach and pesto. So tasty and it made the break room smell great. Also--we tried the honey and brie with some of Joe's bacon. Also delicious.

Yay paninis!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

WPP Day 3

It just keeps getting better. Some highlights from yesterday: Beth came! And our friend Amy came over from where she works (so close to the warehouse). There was kind of a frenzy of panini making, so I can't be sure what everyone put on theirs. I did bring a jar of Branston's pickle, which is chutney-like. That showed up on my sandwich--cheddar, Branston's pickle, yellow mustard--amazing. It also showed up dramatically on Dan's bagel panini--oozing out the center hole. Karen came too, with a South Beach from Buon Giorno. She did seem to enjoy it, although not as much as Dan did yesterday.
It was sunny outside so we ate at the picnic table, even though Ethan chose to stay inside and act hurt at us abandoning him. (He had a repeat--ham, cheddar, yellow mustard, dense rye bread.)
And the crowning moment of the day (for me, at least) was putting Joe's turkey baloney sandwich on the panini press. He ate half of it cold and he said it was okay. I pressed the remaining half and he said it became "delectable."
Yay paninis!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Warehouse Panini Party Days 1 + 2

The Warehouse Panini Party is in full swing this week. Some highlights from Day 1: Provolone, goat cheese, arugula, roasted red pepper on sourdough-enjoyed by Beth, making a guest appearance. Prosciutto, goat cheese, fig jam, arugula, provolone on sourdough--I finally got it prefect!!!
Ham, turkey, cheddar on dense rye bread--enjoyed by Ethan. That cheese melted all the way through the bread. Yum! Karen got a salami and cheese from Buon Giorno and threw that on. Janna had turkey and provolone on whole wheat and Steve Cole didn't even know there was a panini party going on when he showed up with pita bread and hummus. What makes pita taste better? The panini press!
Day 2 for me was pastrami, provolone, roasted red peppers and yellow mustard on sourdough. Soooo good. Ethan repeated his day 1 sammie with the addition of yellow mustard. Tom made a two part cheese sandwich on rye-half had swiss, the other "rosy goat." (Goat cheese with rosemary) Dan got a South Beach from Buon Giorno and pressed it perfectly, then retreated to a corner to eat it while making funny noises--get a room!
Day 3 promises to be great--Beth's returning and my other friend Amy is stopping by. And hopefully Dan remembers to pick up honey and brie so we can make brie, honey, and prosciutto panini.......insert Homer Simpson drooling noise here.......

Town Talk Pulled Pork!

I guess I was so excited about getting the internet back that I forgot to talk about the fantastic pulled pork sandwich I had at the Town Talk Diner Saturday night.
Beth and I went out to dinner with our friend Amy who was having a very rare night off from both kids and husband. We decided to take her to a place with the fancy cocktails and sandwiches, of course.
I've been to the Town Talk a few times and I been tempted to get the pulled pork sandwich but I've always been distracted by other tasty menu items. Well, those days are over. The sandwich is a nice pile of yummy barbecue pork with some crispy cole slaw and homemade bread and butter pickles on top. Delish! I washed it down with the Panty Dropper--a float made from sparkling wine and orange basil sorbet. It's really good and fun to order.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Holy Blog-splosion, Batgirl!

I think I'm caught up with the most pressing on sandwich matters. We had some internet access issues at our place all week, but we're good for now!
Onto other pressing sandwich matters: I will be working at our warehouse all this week. I'm taking the panini press with me. It's going to be a week long panini party! Let me know if you'd like to drop by...

Gyros are fantastic!

We had our fantastic Gyros and America's Next Top Model Sandwich Night last Wednesday. After careful consideration, I decided to try and make the gyro meat myself. I searched the internet far and wide and the most common home recipe involves baking a lamby meatloaf and then weighting it with a brick to compress it into gyro consistency. Intriguing. Just before I decided to try that method, I found a recipe in Cooks Illustrated that said that method lead to weird spongy tasting meat. Their method was to make the mixture, then shape it into little patties and fry them in a skilet. That way you get the good crusty browned parts too. Mmmm...

We had pita bread, chopped tomatoes and red onion, tsastiki sauce, and feta cheese for the sandwiches. I made a Greek salad, too. It was so good, we had them Thursday night, too.

And thanks to Sarah, our newest Sandwich Night participant, we had an array of baklava and killer brownies. Yum!
And Sarah will definitely be back for Sandwich Night--her friend worked on Cycle 10 of ANTM so we can get all the behinds the scene scoop!

Sir Benedict's

We went to a tournament in Duluth with Beth's hockey team last weekend. On of the team traditions during the tournament is a stop at Sir Benedict's. They have a nice selection of sandwiches with good fixings (pickled jalapenos and sprouts!) and good bread. Plus, there's a huge selection of fancy soda pop and beer. Sadly, they didn't have my favorite sandwich, the bacon avocado, on the menu this time. Beth and decided to split a roast beef with horseradish sauce and an egg salad with "bistro" sauce. Pretty tasty!

In other Duluth sandwich news, we had a vegetable panini from the Blue Note Cafe as well. It was pretty good--even with the unusual (for a hot sandwich, anyway) addition of cucumbers and lettuce.

They call it the Russian Hamburger

I arranged to meet Karen and Beth for lunch two Fridays ago at the Russian Tea House. This place sits directly across the street from my gym. I've always wanted to try it out but they are only open Tuesday-Friday from 11-3. I'm never over there then, so the place has been a mystery to me.
I have done some homework on the place though and from that I knew they we famous for their piroshki, or Russian Hamburger. Sounds like a perfect Friday lunch!

I got there first, followed shortly by Karen. Everything on the menu looked so good we decided to order one of each! We were pretty happy when Beth showed up to share in our bounty.

One of each makes a perfect meal for three. Clockwise, from the top: piroshki, cabbage rolls, borscht, chocolate poppyseed roll, more borscht, beet and potato salad, beef stroganoff (Fridays only) and black tea with honey. Everything was great and the total bill was only around $25. I'll be back!
(And I don't care if you think the piroshki doesn't count as a sandwich. I'm counting it!)

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Sandwich Night!!!

Tonight is the night for gyros and America's Next Top Model! Yay! I'm attempting to make my own gyro meat from an recipe in Cook's Illustrated (July? 2007). I found the article while sorting through piles of magazines this week. Lucky break! If it turns out to be a bust, Holy Land Deli is located just a few blocks away!
Also, I'm behind on posts based on sandwiches I ate last weekend at the Russian Tea House in St. Paul and in Duluth. Expect a writing frenzy in the next few days...

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Meatballs again?

Oh yes.
We celebrated week 3 of America's Next Top Model Cycle 10 with another round of meatball sandwiches. I put giardniera peppers on them this time. Fantastic!
Also fantastic--the elimination of the annoying and delusional Allison from ANTM. Yay!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Meatball sandwiches are my true love

Beth made spaghetti sauce Saturday night. And since we decided to live like shut-ins this weekend (but I went through all my paperwork and old magazines!) we were able to let it cook on the stove all day yesterday. Mmmm....
By lunchtime, I couldn't resist the temptation any longer. I had to make meatball sandwiches! We bought a loaf of big poofy French bread on Saturday, so that formed the base. I sliced the bread in half, put meatballs, a little sauce and shredded Monterey jack and parmesan cheese on it. Then I broiled it until the cheese bubbled. I spread garlic butter on the top half of the bread and broiled that next. Finally, I put it all together and squished it. Fantastic!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

It ain't Matt's...

Karen kidnapped me at lunch on Friday and took me the Nook in St. Paul. I've heard good things about their Jucy Lucy (actually called the Juicy Nookie) so I figured I'd give it a try.
The result--meh. It was still a little pink inside which means the cheese is just melted and not yet molten. No servers' warnings about burns here. Sissies. They put some extra cheese on top, perhaps to disguise the soggy exterior of the meat and the not quite entirely cooked grilled onions. I was most definitely underwhelmed.
No one makes a better Jucy Lucy than Matt's. No one.