Monday, July 9, 2012

I Ate a Tomato!

(From 9/7/07)
Worthy of headlines? Only when you consider that in my 44 years of life I haven't willingly prepared and eaten a raw tomato. Until tonight. The tomato is one of those foods that just looks like it should taste good. It's colorful, good for you, versatile - all  those things that should recommend it, yet I've persisted in leaving it at the top of my "One Hated Food That I Refuse To Eat and You Can't Make Me" list. Everyone in our family gets to have one food on this list. It makes for a very peaceful mealtime. I don't have to worry about accommodating 7 different tastes at once and no one is freaked about having to eat their One Hated Food. (If anyone happens to forget what that food is, I simply assure them it is probably Brussels sprouts and they are safe from ever having to encounter it that evening.)

    But back to the killer tomatoes. In an effort to restrain our eating-out budget, which is rising quicker than our grocery budget, I'm trying to plan ahead. Tonight's dinner was quick, simple, and pretty darn yummy! If you'd like to recreate it for yourself (and any tomato haters in your house), here you go!

    (Note the first- this recipe is all about the ingredients. If you want just any old sandwich, throw together a pbj. To make  this one fancy-schmancy - splurge on the good stuff!
Note the second - some of you out there, and you know who you are, wouldn't follow a recipe if your life depended on it. That's cool. This one has no set quantities for you to worry about. It's most forgiving.)

Italian BLTs
1. Slice tomatoes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, then drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Set aside while you're preparing the rest of the ingredients.
2.Wash and dry some Romaine lettuce leaves.
3. Cook bacon.
4. While bacon is cooking, slice some fresh mozzarella and set aside. If your opinion of mozzarella has been influenced by too many servings of string cheese, you are in for a treat! Splurge, remember?
5. In your food processor squeeze 1/2 lemon, add a generous spoon of mayo (1/3 c. or so), a handful of fresh basil leaves, and a dash of garlic powder. Process until smooth.
6. Prepare the bread. Toast if you like. Use a good quality Italian bread (Central Market pagnotta is great) or get ciabatta, whole grain..whatever you like. No Wonder Bread allowed!
7. Spread bread w/ basil mayo, layer bacon, lettuce, dressed tomatoes, and cheese.


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