Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Spicing up the turkey sandwich

I’m still loving sandwiches made from Seward Co-op’s fantastic roast turkey. But I’m getting a little bored with the usual wheat bread/turkey/fancy mustard/greens combo I throw together as I’m running out the door for work. The answer to my turkey sandwich doldrums lay in a container of jalapeno peppers I bought at Trader Joe’s. You can’t buy just one pepper. You have to buy a box of eight. Which means I use one and never get around to the using the rest and they rot. Not this time. I started thinking about pepper jelly. And putting pepper jelly and cream cheese on a cracker….I made up a batch of jalapeno jelly. And I ate it on crackers spread with cream cheese. And then I thought, spread that combo on some St. Agnes Bakery St. Paul Sourdough and add some turkey. Yes! It’s spicy and a little sweet. The cream cheese keeps it from being too hot. The jelly brings out the lightly salty taste in the turkey. And you really can’t make a bad sandwich on such good bread.

Monday, June 28, 2010

A chip off the old block...sort of

My oldest niece is the closest thing I've got to a mini-me. We look alike. We act alike. And now we share the love of sandwiches!
She sent me this photo of her fabulous Sunday morning breakfast. Raspberry lemonade, two donuts and the "perfect" turkey sandwich. That's turkey, romaine, tomato, Dijon mustard and mayonnaise. That's my girl!
I only wish we shared her 11 year old metabolism...

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Sandwiches Make Everything Better

We had a couple booming thunderstorms yesterday evening. There were some trees down in the neighborhood and flooding in the streets. We were pleased that our giant tree seemed to weather the storm just fine. That was, until we were awoken late in the night by the loudest crash I have ever heard. I thought we had been hit by lightening. Nope, we were hit by an enormous branch, right over our sleeping heads. It had merely waited a few hours to give up the ghost.
Luckily, our friends Ben and Amy came to the rescue with breakfast treats from Butter. We had broccoli quiche, eclairs and this gorgeous biscuit sandwich with a fried egg, sausage and cheddar cheese. Yum! The biscuit was a little on the sturdy side, which helped hold the sandwich together and the sausage was well spiced. I added a little sriracha sauce because it makes an egg sandwich even better. It was a good distraction while we waited for the tree service to come and hoist the tree sized branch off our roof.
They are predicting more storms tonight. The tree's off the roof now, leaving a huge hole. Who's bringing breakfast tomorrow? We may need the distraction. And buckets and mops!
UPDATE: The emergency roofing team came just before the storm last night and fitted us out with a plywood patch and attractive blue tarp cover. It kept us dry!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

So much sandwich news

My friends have been showering me with sandwich tidbits lately.
First, my cousin Jeff let me know that Instructables is having a sandwich contest. The entry is due July 17. Which sandwich should I enter?
Then my friend Jackie sent me a slideshow of gorgeous sandwiches from Los Angeles.
And finally, my friend Ali let me know that my post about the ratatouille and goat cheese sandwich I ate at Rock the Garden made it into the Walker Art Center blog about the concert! Fame! Will fortune follow?

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Rocking the Garden with sandwiches

I went to Rock the Garden at the Walker Art Gallery yesterday. It's an annual concert hosted by my favorite radio station, The Current. (If you aren't listening, you should be.) We got there a little late to get a spot on the slope facing the stage, so we ended up on the top of the hill with this limited view.
That was okay, because Rock the Garden is like a big picnic. Rather than bringing in the usual festival food vendors, they have local restaurants at the food booths. On the sandwich front we had the difficult choice bewteen the Vincent burger, an upscale Jucy Lucy filled with smoked gouda and braised short ribs, and Joe's Garage baguette sandwiches. Joe's won, due to their proximity to our blanket and the fact that I've consumed a lot of Jucy Lucy lately. I chose ratatouille with goat cheese. You can't really see the filling in this picture, but it was soaking all of its goodness into the bread. It was a great combo--and so simple, really. Nice job, Joe's Garage!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Tonight's the Night!

I made my goal of $500 for HOME Line's Treadmill-a-thon fundraiser! Yay!
Now, watch me eating a Jucy Lucy while wearing a clown costume and walking on a treadmill. The show starts at 8:30 PM CDT tonight, June 15. Watch it live via webcast.
If you want to contact me while I'm on the treadmill to present extra challenges, send an email to treadmill (at) homelinemn (dot) org between 8:30 PM CDT and 9:00 PM CDT!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

In training!

I did a training session for Treadmill-a-thon at Matt's yesterday. I paid careful attention to how much dripped out of the bun while I ate. I can't spill any bits on the treadmill, after all.
The verdict? I'll be ordering my Jucy Lucy without onions, sadly. It's too hard to keep those suckers in the bun. As for cheese, I spilled one tiny drop. I think I can keep that under control.
I still need to raise $105 to reach my Jucy Lucy goal, though. Consider a donation for a truly unique and important organization!

Friday, June 11, 2010

If you want the best jam, you've got to make your own

We lucked out when we bought our house. There were strawberries AND raspberries growing in the back yard. Every June the strawberries come in. And as long as you weed them and make sure they have enough water, the berries come in droves for a few sweet weeks. This year we've made strawberry ice cream, strawberry rhubarb crisp, strawberry spinach salad and strawberry smoothies. It was about time to make some jam, don't you think?
And what's the best use of strawberry jam? Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, of course. On whole wheat because it's the best!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Working my way through the menu.

When I find a sandwich place I like, I make an effort to sample all of the different menu items. It can be hard when I find a sandwich I really love on a menu but I have to force myself to try everything else. Life is hard, isn't it?
When I go to Cheeky Monkey, I am always tempted by the pot roast sandwich. It has beautifully tender pot roast with horseradish cream, pickled red onion and arugula. The onions and the arugula balance out the richness of the meat perfectly. It's a hard sandwich to pass up.
I was strong during my last visit to Cheeky Monkey. I didn't order it. I chose the fried egg sandwich instead. What a revelation! This sandwich ranks way up there on best fried egg sandwiches of all time. The bread was fried on the griddle and held a perfect over easy egg, thick salty bacon, arugula and mayonnaise. My heart won't be thanking me anytime soon for this treat, but man it was tasty!
It was so tasty that I didn't even ask Beth for a bite of her pot roast sandwich. She had to take a picture of me making declarations of love to it as well.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Philly Roast Pork, where have you been all of my life?

Isn't that pretty?
Last night we celebrated Kate's visit to the Twin Cities with Philly Roast Pork sandwiches. Karen has been talking these up to me for ages and apparently we've been waiting for the perfect moment to make them.
The Philly Roast Pork is Philadelphia's other famous sandwich. It's made from aged provolone, seasoned roast pork, and sauteed brocolli rabe.
Karen ordered the cheese from Philadelphia and picked up French rolls from a Vietnamese bakery as they seemed like an appropriate stand in for the crusty rolls used in Philly.
I checked out some recipes for the roast pork and was struck by its similarity to porketta, a seasoned pork roast popular here. Since I was feeling pressed for time and since I knew it would be awesome, I picked up a porketta roast at Cossetta's and cooked it the night before, reserving the pan juices. On Sandwich Night, I cut the roast into 1/8" slices and warmed it up with the reserved juices. I augmented the pan juices with a chicken broth and more herbs and spices.
I cooked up the brocolli rabe by blanching it first, then sauteeing it in olive oil with lots of garlic and some red pepper flakes.
To assemble, you split the roll, lay on slices of cheese, then meat, then brocolli rabe. It's that simple. I served extra pan juices for dipping, because it seemed like the right thing to do.
How were they?
Well, I declared undying love for Karen after my first bite. What else could I do? She introduced me to one of the greatest sandwiches of all time.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Sandwiches for a Good Cause

This is a special announcement from the community service wing of Sandwiches I Have Loved.
In two weeks I will be participating in Treadmill-a-thon, a treadmill marathon to benefit HOME Line. HOME Line is a unique non-profit which provides free legal, organizing, education and advocacy services so that tenants throughout Minnesota can solve their own rental housing problems. HOME Line is also Beth's place of employment.
I will be hitting the treadmill with the following sandwich focussed fundraising goals:

If I raise $100, I will eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

If I raise $250, I will wear a clown costume while eating the PB&J.

If I raise $500, I will wear the clown costume and eat a JUCY LUCY. On a treadmill. Yeah.

For more information, check out my Treadmill-a-thon page. Thanks!