Monday, August 5, 2013

The Essence of Summer - Tomato and Herbed Mayo Sandwich

My husband keeps talking about us only having four more weeks of summer. He's said it at least three times in as many days. It's driving me crazy, actually. 

I stomp my foot at him in protest (he loves when I do that) and tell him to stop being such an alarmist. 

Summer's Favorite Sandwich, Photo: NK 
Come on now, people - summer doesn't actually end on Labor Day!  

It's quite a rare occurrence that my other half takes the glass half empty role. I'm usually the one with the pessimistic outlook (or as I like to call it, "being a realist"), but when it comes to summer, my favorite season of them all, I am in full-on denial. Loath to admit it though I may be, I will grant him that summer is going way too fast. So until all that glorious sun yields to the chill of Autumn, I'll be doing all I can to live in moment. That's right, I will relish the feeling of my toes wiggling freely in all their flip-flopped glory as I head out into the balmy air in full frolic mode every chance I get. Clearly, I also will be eating every fresh Tomato and ear of Corn I can get my hands on.

For me, there is truly only one sandwich that embodies the essence of summer and everything simple and wonderful about the season -- the much talked about, much loved Tomato and Mayonnaise Sandwich. (Check out a few of my favorite meditations on the subject HERE, HERE and HERE).         

Today, we'll be paying homage to this seasonal icon with our own take on the classic. We add a semi-controversial lettuce leaf for texture, and, though regular Mayo works really well (Hellman's full-fat, please!), we take ours up a notch with lots of finely minced Parsley and a touch of Oregano from my garden and, here's the topper - a game-changing sprinkle of Lemon Zest. Make this satisfying sandwich and extend your summer that much longer. 

The Must Haves:

Super Ripe Beefsteak Tomatoes - luckily, they're at peak season and everywhere
Good Quality Mayo
A Hint of Salt (we prefer Kosher Salt or Sea Salt) 
Black Pepper - lots 
and finally

Good Quality Toasted White Bread - I know, I know, but if ever you should return to White Bread, it's here.

Here we go - 

Tomato and Herbed Mayo Sandwich
Makes 2 Sandwiches

4 Slices of Toasted White Bread
1 Beefsteak Tomato sliced into 1/4 inch thick rounds
2-4 Leaves of Oak Leaf Lettuce
Kosher Salt or Sea Salt
Lots of Black Pepper

Herb Mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons Italian Parsley, very finely minced
1 Tablespoon Oregano, very finely minced
Zest of 1 Lemon
1/4 Cup Mayonnaise

Mix the Herb Mayonnaise ingredients together in a small bowl. 

Spread one side of the bread with a generous amount of Herb Mayonnaise. On the other piece of Bread, lay down a Lettuce Leaf and two or more slices of Tomato. Sprinkle Tomato with a good dose of Salt and lots of Black Pepper. Place the Mayonnaise half on top and close up the sandwich. Enjoy! 

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