Larrupin

Uncommonly Good

I Love Summer Tomatoes!

I didn’t plant a garden this year, but a friend did, and she has been sharing the bounty! I have garden fresh tomatoes for the first time in years, an I am in hog-heaven!

I put this quick snack together a few hours ago.

Fresh Tomato Bruscetta

 

Fresh Tomato Bruschetta

For a Single Serving

  • 6 half-inch slices sour dough bread (or any other dense bread)
  • Olive oil spray
  • Garlic granules
  • Dried basil
  • Dried oregano
  • Parmesan cheese
  • 1 fresh tomato
  • Balsamic vinegar

Directions:

  1. Put the bread slices on a foil lined toaster oven tray.
  2. Spray with olive oil and sprinkle with garlic granules. Turn slices over and repeat on the other side.
  3. Sprinkle with oregano and basil.
    Optional: Toast the bread at 300°–325° to your preferred crunchiness. Skip this if you’re in a hurry or if you want your bread soft.
  4. Top each slice of toast/bread with a slice of tomato.
  5. Sprinkle with more basil and oregano.
  6. Top with slivers of Parmesan cheese. (Feta crumbles are also good if you have any.)
  7. Slide the toast in the oven at about 350° until tomato is warmed through.
  8. Serve with a small bowl of balsamic vinegar. Dip toast in the vinegar before each bite.

Note: if you make more than one serving each person will need a personal bowl of balsamic vinegar. There will be double dipping. 🙂

Larrapin!

 

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July 4, 2012 Posted by | Appetizer, Snacks | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pancetta Egg Sandwich

I’m out of bacon, so this morning I opened up the pancetta and made a pancetta egg sandwich on French bread. It’s lightly grilled with a slice of melty provolone inside.
I started by frying two slices of pancetta in a fairly large iron skillet. When it shrank enough for me to scoot it to the side, I put a slice of French bread in the pan to toast lightly. I traded it out with the other slice of bread after a few minutes. The cheese went on the bread while it was in the pan.
The pancetta came out when it was brown and crispy on both sides. It went immediately on top of the melty cheese.
A dab of fresh olive oil went into the skillet and I cracked the egg into the puddle of cool oil. It bubbled and popped while the bread kept warm on the other side of the skillet. I like my egg sunny-side up, but for egg sandwiches I usually go over easy so the yolks aren’t so fragile. When the egg was nearly done, I gently broke the yolk so some of it could ooze out and cook. I made sure the center was still jiggly with a runny center when I piled the egg on top of the pancetta.
Larrapin!
It’s not on a heart healthy or low-salt diet, but every once in a while it sure is tasty!
Some options that would have been good include a thin spread of mayo; avocado slices; maybe some thinly sliced sauteed mushrooms… A thin slice of a tomato fresh from the garden sprinkled with fresh graded parmesan and a splash of balsamic vinegar would also hit the spot.
You could also make this with bacon, and switch out the cheese to what sounds good to you.
Mmmmm. What sounds good to you?

August 15, 2010 Posted by | Breakfast, Sandwich | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Balsamic Ham and Salami Panino

According to Wikipedia: A panino is a sandwich made from a small loaf of bread, typically a ciabatta (an Italian white bread). The bread is cut horizontally and filled with salami, ham, meat, cheese or other food and sometimes served hot. A grilled panino is buttered on the outside and grilled in a press.

Even though I used French bread, I’m calling this a Balsamic Ham and Salami Panino.

  • Turn the heat to medium high and put the bread face-down on the grill to warm while you slice red peppers and part of a purple onion.
  • When the grill is hot, saute the veggies in extra virgin olive oil. When the veggies are tender, move them to the side and throw on the salami and ham.
  • As the meat warms I sprinkle it all with Janz and toss it together with tongs to mix the flavors. Add a splatter of Balsamic Vinegar just before you put the sandwich together.

To build the sandwich:

  1. Start with slices of Provolone on both halves of the warm bread
  2. Put strips of pepper and onion on top of the cheese
  3. Add layers of salami and ham
  4. Splatter the grill with a little more olive oil if needed and put the sandwich together on hot grill
  5. Press with a sandwich press* if you have one. If you don’t have a press, use the bottom of another iron skillet.
  6. When bottom of sandwich is brown, turn and press the other side. You’ll know it’s done when the cheese starts to drip down and sizzle on the grill.
  7. Serve with additional Balsamic Vinegar for dipping.

Larapin!

*My “sandwich press” is actually a bacon press. I bought it new a few years ago. I think it just cost $3-4 at the time.

June 7, 2008 Posted by | Sandwich | , , , | Leave a comment

Pastrami, Salami, Balsamic Sandwich

This hearty filling sandwich was for my 18-year-old son so I loaded it with a huge pile of pastrami, salami, red pepper, red onion and seasoned it with Janz and a couple of vinegars—it was good to the last bite.

I start by turning on the heat under my handy dandy iron griddle. I cut a seasme seed hoagie in half and laid it flat on the grill to toast.


While the griddle and hoagie heat up, slice a chunk of red pepper into thin slivers and cut a few slices off a fat red onion and separate the rings onto the griddle with the red pepper. When the bread is slightly toasted remove it from the griddle and throw on the pepper and onion. Give it a splash of extra virgin olive oil and use tongs to toss it all together with a substantial dose of Janz Seasoning Blend and some red wine vinegar.


When the veggies are tender add the salami and pastrami to the pile and add more seasoning and red wine vinegar. When the meat is warm and browing splatter with Balsamic Vinegar and toss the meat and veggies again. Put the hoagie on top of the pile of meat to warm.

To prepare the sandwich, take the bread off the griddle and put slices of provolone cheese on the bread while it’s still warm. Use the tongs to place the onion and peppers on top of the cheese then pile on the meat and top with more onions and pepper. Grate mozzarella cheese on top of the pile.

Turns out, this sandwich was gigantic and there was no way to smash it into a biteable layer. So I put it back on the griddle.
I did my best to poke all the insides between the layers of bread and then pressed it with an iron bacon press. I first spritzed the press with oil to keep it from sticking. A iron skillet would also work for this.

There was a stray red pepper, but when it was done, but after I flipped the sandwich to brown it on both sides, you could get your mouth around it.

Cut the sandwich into half and serve it with a small bowl of balsamic vinegar for dipping.

Pretty tasty!

June 4, 2008 Posted by | Sandwich | , , | Leave a comment

Bruschetta

Bruschetta – or Fresh Tomatoes on Toast
I went to the farmer’s market yesterday morning and found some really nice tomatoes. They were from Texas, but that was as close as I could get to “home grown” this early in the season. I was in the mood for a late night snack last night and the tomatoes sounded good so I decided to make bruschetta to take advantage of the fresh flavor.
Generically speaking, bruschetta is simply toasted bread, seasoned with olive oil and herbs, topped with tomato and cheese. It can be prepared on the grill or in the oven. Here’s how I made this batch in a toaster oven.

Ingredients:

  • French Bread
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil*
  • Herb Seasoning Blend*
  • Fresh Tomato*
  • Hard Cheese*
  • Avocado (optional, but yummy!)
  • Balsamic Vinegar*

Directions:

  1. Slice French bread about 3/4 inch thick, and place on foil-lined toaster oven baking sheet. Coat both sides with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with herb seasoning.
  2. Toast at about 300°-325° just until tops start to turn golden brown then turn & toast the other side. (In a toaster oven close to the heat source this will just take 5 minutes or so.)
  3. When both sides are golden place slices of tomato on top of each slice of toast and sprinkle with more herbs. Top with grated hard cheese and return to the oven until cheese is melted.
  4. Remove from toaster oven and top with slices of avocado.
  5. Pour a thin layer of balsamic vinegar on serving plate and place bruschetta on the plate in the vinegar.
  6. Dig in.

*How tos:

  • To coat with extra virgin olive oil* pour the oil in a small condiment bowl and use a pastry brush to paint with oil. An easier way is to keep oil in a spritzer bottle and spray it on the bread slices. The spritz method also lets you use less oil if you’re concerned about counting fat grams.
  • Basil is the herb* most frequently found in bruschetta recipes. Top tomato slices with fresh basil leaves or sprinkle with dried basil if you don’t have a favorite herb blend you want to use. I’ve created my own herb mix, Janz Seasoning Blend, that I use on practically everything. Basil is one of the prominent flavors in this blend.
  • Some bruschetta recipes call for chopped tomatoes*. However I prefer slices so I don’t lose any when I eat it. It much neater to eat if you don’t have to worry about the tomatoes falling off when you take a bite.
  • I have a cheese grater that I fill with chunks of Parmesan, Asiago and Romano* cheeses. When I fill the grater with different cheeses I automatically get a cheese blend when I use it. Another cheese option is to slice thin slivers of Feta on top of tomatoes.
    By the way, cheese is the reason I line the baking sheet with foil. Small bits of baked cheese can be hard to clean. A foil liner can be tossed. Rinse the baking sheet and you’re done.
  • In the past, I have “drizzled” balsamic vinegar* on the top of each piece prior to serving, but found it hard to “drizzle” and frequently ended up pouring vinegar over each piece. This obviously makes the toast soggy and the flavor can be overwhelming. Plan B has been to pour a bit of balsamic vinegar in a condiment bowl and serve it on the side for dipping. Last night it occurred to me to pour the vinegar on the serving plate before I pulled the toast from the oven. I placed the toast on the thin puddle on the plate and the bottom 1/8th inch of the toast soaked up the vinegar, just enough to provide flavor in every bite without making the toast soggy.

Unfortunately, I didn’t think to take pictures before I ate this tasty snack. However, I still have a couple of fresh tomatoes and as soon as an avocado is ready, maybe tomorrow, I’ll make it again and I’ll add some pictures.

As I wrote this I looked up recipes for bruschetta and found some alternatives with white beans or prosciutto. I’ll give those variations a try and share the results sometime soon.

May 24, 2008 Posted by | Appetizer | , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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