An associate of mine suggested a night of building sandwiches indoors and stretching out the hinges of a seldom-used sandwich press. Needless to say, I leaped at the opportunity. Fine, fresh ingredients were procured, with options for meat, bread, and accouterments. The first of my eventual creations, pictured above, was turkey with avocado, home-cooked bacon, Swiss cheese, tomato, lettuce, red onion, Philippe’s spicy mustard, salt, and pepper on olive rosemary bread.
The second sandwich consisted of ham, avocado, Swiss, tomato, onion, sprouts, bacon, and again, Philippe’s spicy mustard, this time on white French bread.
Both sandwiches were tasty, warm, crisp, and hearty. The sandwich press performed admirably and set one to wonder why it had heretofore been used so sparingly. The grill of the bread was enhanced by leaving a thin sheen of the bacon grease on its griddled surface before pressing the sandwiches. My two creations were roughly equivalent, but the few minor tweaks left one sandwich standing head and shoulders above the other.
The ham sandwich was good, and had it been the only sandwich made this evening, I would have nodded to myself, a job well done. Unfortunately, the degree to which the turkey sandwich came together exposed the shortcomings in my creation. Had I chosen to place sprouts on the turkey sandwich and lettuce on the ham sandwich, rather than vice versa, the two sandwiches would have achieved something closer to equilibrium. Sprouts, often masquerading as a “health-food item,” do not pair well with ham. They are usually seen on turkey or chicken, and, as I discovered tonight, for good reason. The earthy tone of the sprouts stood apart from the creaminess of the Swiss, the ham, and the avocado, which left two disparate tastes in the mouth, fighting for attention.
The other major factor here was the bread. The olive-rosemary loaf was spectacular, and took the press and the bacon grease with aplomb, bringing yet another layer of wondrous taste to an already spectacular sandwich. I feel bad for old ham on French, as he showed up on the wrong night and was outclassed. I look forward to many more nights spent with the sandwich press and a loaf of this fine bread.