Monday, April 29, 2013

slow roasted blt

Who doesn't like a good BLT? So simple, so delicious. But Ed really isn't a fan of sandwiches for dinner, don't ask me why. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that the man has a hollow leg and a sandwich just doesn't fill him up. Well, I tried to make sandwiches hearty with a good side dish so that dinner can be filling for him, and I can still get to eat burgers and sammies for dinner.
This BLT is jazzed up with slow roasted tomatoes and bacon. It's also a lettuce-less BLT- the L stands for leaves in this case. I use basil instead of lettuce to make this sandwich, and the basil is mixed into the mayonnaise.
This is what 4 hours in the oven does to a tomato. Low and slow- you can always pull them out before they get to this point if you want your tomatoes more juicy than sun-dried. But I like mine sweet and tangy, and just a little chewy.
Theses are some of the fruits of my labor. Get it? Fruits? Well, I know basil isn't a fruit, but I do have a potted garden this year that I'm growing basil, parsley, onions, strawberries, bell peppers (green and red), cucumbers, hot peppers (poblano and banana) and tomatoes in. So far, just the strawberries and herbs are ready for use.
Be sure to make your spread ahead of time, so that the basil has time to seep it's flavor into the mayo.
Go with me on this one and buy butcher quality bacon. Thick sliced, high quality bacon is really what makes this sandwich. I'm all for the regular packaged bacon on day to day basis, but this sandwich really needs the good stuff.
I use my grooved stone to make bacon in the oven, because it crisps it up and the fat lays on the bottom. You can always use a pan that has been lined with parchment paper as well, but please, do cook the bacon in the oven. The bacon lies flat nicely this way, and it just seems to be more flavorful and less greasy fatty.
This is also where I will caution you to use baker quality bread. Wonder bread just isn't going to do this sandwich justice. You need chewy, yeasty, hearty bread to stand up to a sandwich of this caliber. Lightly toast the bread in the oven- no need for oil or butter. Liberally apply the basil mayonnaise, top with 2 slices of tomato, as much bacon as you like, and chow down.
Slow Roasted BLT
Original recipe found at Not Without Salt.
1 lb butcher sliced bacon
1 loaf hearty bread
2 large beefsteak or red hot tomatoes
1/2 cup mayonnaise
3 Tablespoons fresh basil, thinly sliced
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 225 degrees. Slice tomatoes to about 1/4 inch thickness and place on a cooking sheet lined with parchment paper. Drizzle tomatoes very lightly with olive oil and season with pepper and just a tiny amount of salt. Roast in oven for 4 hours or until tomatoes are shrived on the edges but have maintained some juices. Set aside and allow to cool. Bring oven to 400 degrees. Place bacon in a cooking pan lined with parchment paper and set inside preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, or until crispy. Meanwhile, mix together basil and mayonnaise. Lightly toast bread in oven for 1-2 minutes and set aside. Liberally apply mayonnaise to toast and layer with 2 slices of tomato, several strips of bacon and enjoy!