Kinda left you hanging there, didn’t I?
I lost my mojo there for a minute, and never blogged about my terrific week of sandwiches from Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day, which is a great disservice to you, readers. Also, I figure I need to get back in the habit, because Vegan Mofo starts in September this year…and I’m gonna participate. Word! I’m even going to do a theme: neglected spices and herbs in my spice cabinet. Yeah, pretty basic, but September is going to be a wild, busy month for me, and I need to do something manageable if I’m going to do it at all. But you’ll get to read about my random spice finds and recipes that feature them! Mostly it’s Indian types of spices, but there’s a few other randoms in there as well. I only found 20 that I never use (only 20), so I might intersperse a few dishes using my favorite and most used spices and herbs as well. We’re talking dried stuff here, stuff that keeps in your cabinet for a while. So as much as I’d loooove to write about how basil is the best herb, it’s really only fantastic when it’s fresh, so I’ll be branching out a little.
Enough jibber jabber, you came here for sandwiches, yeah?
First up, French Tofu Salad with Grapes! While this recipe is pretty basic, flavor-wise, it was darned good and really filling. I used superfirm pre-cubed tofu, which cut down on some prep time since it didn’t need to be pressed (or cut!). I did find that it did not absorb much of the flavor from the salad, though, so I probably wouldn’t serve this to a tofu noob. But for us tofu lovers, bring it on! I forgot to toast my almonds and used red grapes because the store was out of green, but those are the only changes I made to the recipe. Do beware – it is hella messy to eat if you just pile it onto a baguette like this. I suggest leaving a hinge for the salad to press against so it doesn’t go all over your hands. (Which is embarrassing only if you eat lunch at your desk, really.)
Aha! This is something that I changed a lot! I didn’t have any wheat gluten for making the No-Cluck Cutlets required for the Something Blackened This Way Comes sammie, so I used tofu instead. My notes (yay for making recipe notes!) say that I used 8 slices of pressed, extra firm tofu, marinated in 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, then proceeded with the recipe as is. I’m pretty sure I got that idea from the blackened tofu recipe in Eat, Drink & Be Vegan (my up-to-now favorite recipe for that sort of thing).
I loved this. Blackened things are just too wonderful for words anyway, but the tomato relish was so crisp and tart and refreshing atop the smoky tofu slab, and the addition of the spicy, mustardy spread pulled it all together. You can see that I wussed out on nice bread for this (and the next) sandwich, but I remember just not having it together enough that week to make what I wanted, which was the Green Monster Bread. I’ve made that before and it was heavenly, so I highly suggest you do the same! Still and all, this whole wheat bun worked just fine.
And then there was this guy. I sort of decided to make The Mac-Shroom as a joke. It’s pretty much what I consider to be the silliest, most unlikely sandwich combination ever. But I love sandwiches, and I love silly things. To be sure, I giggled the whole time I was making this (which was pretty easy, by the way) and every time I ate one, I laughed a little. It just seems too odd! But odd though it may be, it’s also fantastic.
The BBQ portobellos were sweet and tangy. I had never made a BBQ sauce that included coffee or apple butter, but they are admirable additions. It ended up tender and chewy, just like BBQ anything should be. The mac n cheese was a snap to pull together, and was unlike any mac n cheese recipe I’ve made before. I’ll definitely make it as just mac n cheese in the future for a quick and easy side or meal. I think the idea of putting pasta on a sandwich was the part that I was most iffy about, since…carb overload? But the al dente pasta added just enough of a bite. The mayo, which seems like it would get lost on there, contributed a coolness that benefitted the entire conglomeration. I will say that I added fresh arugula to my leftover sandwiches (these are just as good, if not better, cold), and that added a brightness that I really enjoyed.
Man, I had no idea that I had so much to say about this sandwich.
Next up is one I made from this book months ago, but never blogged about. A travesty, because it’s the best thing I’ve made out of here so far!
KFC-Style Sandwich. I will admit something here…before I was vegetarian, I really liked me a good fried chicken sandwich. I ate a lot of them. That totally bums me out to think about now! But at least I have a more than adequate replacement. The No-Cluck Cutlets are great (though I did add some soy sauce to the mix), and once they’re fried up in a crunchy coating, they are a dead ringer for those fried chicken sandwiches of my younger years. I don’t fry things very often (my tummy gets bummed out), but every once in a while this is just the sort of thing that the comfort food doctor ordered.
That’s it for now. I have a couple more things from pre-summer that I can blog about, but I really haven’t been cooking much the past couple of months! A combination of a very tight budget, laziness, food that I froze in the Spring, and just generally not feeling it are the culprits, but I’m starting to get excited about food again. Especially with Vegan Mofo just a couple of weeks away!