Some of you may think that I should be putting my culinary education to better use for this post. Especially with it being only my second. But I can’t help myself!
According to the British Sandwich Association (yes, there actually is one!), this week is British National Sandwich Week. And who doesn’t love a good sandwich?
Here’s a bit of history. Or should I say legend? The Fourth Earl of Sandwich (1718-1792) was a notorious gambler. During a late night hand of cards in 1762 he was hungry but didn’t want to stop playing. He asked a waiter to bring him some cold meat in between two slices of toasted bread. This allowed him to keep playing while he had his snack. The bread kept his fingers from getting dirty and his playing cards from getting greasy.
This multifaceted food crosses cultures and countries. It withstands the backlash during diet trends. Conquers hunger cravings. Depending on ingredients can be considered a delicacy or a comfort food. Soothes children. And soothes adults as if they were children. It’s one of the only foods that is socially acceptable and marketed to be consumed for all three meals a day. And consumed it is. Over 11 billion sandwiches were made in the UK last year and over 45 billion in the States.
So lets celebrate! I am not here to reinvent the basic ham and cheese or ruin memories of your mothers creations. I am sharing two recipes of the sandwiches I crave most. A lemon tahini and vegetable wrap and a leek and mushroom melt. Both are actually vegan, delicious and very satisfying. To honor British Sandwich Week I suggest adding some mature English cheddar cheese to the leek and mushroom melt. Go on, you deserve it!
Lemon Tahini and Vegetable Wrap (makes 2)
3-4 Tablespoons of Lemon tahini sauce (recipe below)
2 Whole wheat tortillas
1 Zucchini, cut into half lengthwise then quarters
1 Carrot, cut into half lengthwise then quarters
4 Stems Broccoli Rabe, trimmed
1 Avocado, pitted and sliced
1 Cup Cannellini Beans, from tin, rinsed and dried
1 Tablespoons Olive oil
Place a small sauté pan over medium heat. Sauté zucchini, carrot and broccoli until slightly soft but still al dente.
Evenly divide vegetables between the two tortillas.
Place avocado strips and cannellini beans on top.
Drizzle with tahini sauce.
Roll tortilla and slice in half on a diagonal angle.
Lemon Tahini Sauce
3 Tablespoons Raw sesame tahini paste
1 Lemon, juiced
3-4 Tablespoons cold water
Mix tahini paste and lemon juice together. Can be done by hand. Mixture will thicken.
Add water one tablespoon at a time until you reach desired consistency. I love my sauce very smooth. Remainder can be stored up to 4 days, refrigerated.
Leek and Mushroom Melt (makes 2)
1 Small leek, rinsed and chopped
1 Cup crimini mushrooms, leaned and sliced thin
4 slices of fresh multi grain bread, cut thick (bakery preferred)
1 Tablespoons Olive oil plus 1 tbs more for bread
2 Slices of mature English cheddar cheese (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat small sauté pan over medium heat. Add olive oil.
Add leeks and mushroom. Sauté until leeks are translucent. About 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Heat grill pan over medium heat. Add leeks, mushrooms and cheese between bread slices. Rub olive oil on each side.
Place on grill pan when hot. Cook 3 minutes each side. Enjoy!
All recipes © Laura Dove