It wasn’t until a few moments ago that I realized that all of the recipe blogs thus far have been based around dinner. Puzzling, as lunch is probably my favorite meal of the day. Before you call me crazy, let me explain. There’s something about the simplicity and seamless assembly of a sandwich, side of fruit, and chips or nuts. Whether I chose chips or nuts generally depends on what kind of mood and the type of day I’m having. I’m not a proponent of leftovers for lunch, so my default lunch usually encompasses some variation of the previously mentioned items. In addition, lunch is generally a pretty inexpensive meal if you do it right. As I move forward with this blog, I’m going to make more of an effort to post various breakfast and lunch recipes for enthusiasts of all meals.
This BLT recipe comes from the July 2012 issue of Cooking Light and is slightly different from the traditional BLT. The bacon and tomato remain true to the original recipe, however, the addition of the cheese pimiento spread and arugula in place of the lettuce make this a refreshing twist on the classic BLT. Cheese pimiento has long been a southern tradition and in this recipe, the spread consists of: bottled pimientos, shallots, canola mayonnaise, cider vinegar, black pepper, Cheddar cheese, and Parmesan cheese. Parmesan cheese is not generally found in most pimiento cheese spreads, but as always: the more cheese, the better. Some variations have cream cheese mixed in too, but I think the mayonnaise in this one serves as a worthy base. I don’t ever add the salt to the tomatoes at the end, for I find that between the crispy bacon and cheese pimiento spread, there’s enough sodium. This recipe calls for sourdough bread, but sometimes I use ciabatta simply because it’s one of my favorites. You can always revert back to the classic white or wheat toast. This one takes about 20-25 minutes to concoct. I’ve also made the cheese pimiento spread as a stand-alone dip to go with chips or crackers, as it’s sure to be a hit. Pleasant feasting.
Open-Faced Pimiento Cheese BLTs
Recipe courtesy of Cooking Light
Makes 4 sandwiches
2 tbsp. bottled diced pimientos, drained
1 tbsp. grated peeled shallots
2 tbsp. canola mayonnaise
1 tsp. cider vinegar
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
4 oz. shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese (1 cup)
1.25 oz. grated fresh Parmesan cheese (1/3 cup)
4 slices of sourdough or ciabatta bread, toasted
12 tomato slices
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
4 center-cut bacon slices, cooked and halved
1 cup baby arugula leaves
Combine first 7 ingredients in a large bowl. Spread 3 tablespoons cheese mixture on each bread slice; top each with 3 tomato slices. Sprinkle tomato slices evenly with salt. Top each sandwich with 2 bacon halves and 1/4 cup arugula.