About Me

I have been cooking my way through life for over 50 years, beginning with mud pies as a child. I've turned a corner now and feel a Renaissance in my life. Recipes and Random Thoughts is my personal spin in a blog about how to prepare good food and how it prepares you for life. I want to share with you, honest to goodness food punctuated with perspective from the special memories and moments that have marked my journey.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Ultimate Tomato Sandwich with Basil Aioli

It's prime tomato season and I was thinking I'd make myself a really nice juicy tomato sandwich for lunch but all I had in the kitchen were the tomatoes; ripe Pink Ladies with wonderful flavor.  Since it's farmers' market day, I headed over there to collect the rest of the ingredients and got inspired.  I wanted a great tomato sandwich with the best ingredients available.  On market day, I can buy both farm fresh produce, artisnal baked goods, charcuterie, cheese and dairy.  I know the classic tomato sandwich is made with white bread but I dodged that with H&F Bread's "Southern Sandwich Bread".  They must have read my mind.  Grocery store white bread is too gummy and frankly, beneath my dignity.  Their's has a bit more egg, an even texture with a glossy crust and is cut in about half inch slices.  Perfect for sandwiches.  I also purchased Pine Street applewood smoked bacon.  It's my favorite with the right mix of smoke and sliced thick enough but not where you can't bite through it.  It crisps up nicely, too.  I picked up fresh Arugula and couldn't resist a nice bunch of basil.  I had homemade mayo in mind and then got carried away - basil aioli.

  The real mark of a good tomato sandwich is the tomato.  They should have plenty of red juicy flesh and the skin should peel off with little effort from the knife.  Tomato sandwich etiquette allows for tomato juices and mayo to mingle and run down the side of your hand and just below the wrist before you lick it off. Tell your mama I said it was OK
, it's just too good to waste.

For the Basil Aioli, in a food processor:

3 large egg yolks
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp white pepper
2 large garlic cloves minced
1 tsp white wine vinegar
1 tsp lemon juice

Process all ingredients for 1 minute

Add 3/4 cup olive oil through the feed tube.

Process until thickened, about 2 minutes

Add 8-10 large basil leaves and pulse 12 times the process 30 seconds.

Keep covered and refrigerated until ready to use.

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