When I rashly decided to start up this blog again, I figured out why it’s actually good for an amateur cook to have one of these things once so aptly explained as, “Never have so many with so little to say said so much to so few” – It keeps us cooking. I haven’t thought about, tried or looked for new dishes in the past year more than I have in the past week or so.
Bill Buford talks about this and gives his recipe in his fantastic book, Heat. He’s fairly specific, not perfect with the recipe, but close enough to make it at home. I did the requisite Google search for the recipe and what others have done. NEVER EVER did I find someone who followed the recipe from the book – not even the German page I had to translate. Look for a post soon where I do the AUTHENTIC Tuscan-Buford recipe.
UPDATE: 8:20 PM Friday night. It’s in the oven.
So this is my BLT Salad. Sure, it looks just how you would expect a Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato Salad to look like – Bacon, Lettuce & Tomatoes. Of course, the obvious choice to capture the bread component of a BLT is croutons, summarily added. But what about the mayonnaise? As any self-respecting sandwich lover knows, most sandwiches are really just mayonnaise delivery vehicles. For a BLT salad, we need a mayo based dressing, of course. But, what kind of mayo dressing? How about a mayo dressing made with BACON fat?
Stop. Just stop. We should all take a moment of silence and contemplate that.
So, with a 1/3rd of a cup of bacon fat, another 1/3rd of canola oil and a fresh, free range (honest free range, I know the supplier by name) egg yolk, – I went to Mayo-town. Whisking away like taste depended on it (and it did) I created a bacon mayo. So rich, so creamy…so rich! I added some whole grain dijon mustard and champagne vinegar to thin it out.
The next day, I composed the salad and added the dressing. The dressing was soooooo rich and filling, I couldn’t finish the salad and like I said, I was bloated and sick all afternoon. I think I’ve found veggies I like.
Oh, so many years ago when I was an micro-popular blogger, my best friends introduced me to blogger who had left us prematurely. Her name was Sherry. Seeming fairly wonderful, there was a “Cook a Sherry Special” I missed because of familial obligations. I gave my marker and a few days later, made good on that marker – with a kids alphabet soup! Enjoy a blast from my past – I did and I will, too.
Dare I say it’s the first salad that left me bloated and sick? My motto is when you eat at my house if you don’t leave bloated and sick – I didn’t feed you enough. This salad fed me enough…..
OK, so I tried some BLT recipes, I was thinking about a BLT stuffed tomato – I mean, how could that be bad? Well, it wasn’t, that’s for sure, but maybe it needed a bit more umph than I added. I cut off the top of five tomatoes and scooped out the guts. I then squeezed the guts to get as much juice as possible and then strained the mix to just have the juice. The last time I added this to the stuffed tomato mixture, it made it too wet and the stuffing was like cement. So, I reduced it down over medium heat until it was just half of what I started with. I had some day old rosemary bread I made into bread crumbs, mixed them with the tomato juice and a bit of olive oil. Oh, I had also cooked up 1/3 pound of bacon and chopped it into small pieces – that was added also. I then stuffed the tomatoes with the bacon/bread mixture.
I also made polenta – Corn meal cooked in water for hours. So good…..I added Parmesan cheese and salt at the end and it was just corny yummyness. Of course, my family hated it – their loss. Add some roasted chicken legs and this is what it all looked like
Yeah, it was great. I made a sauce of caramelized onions, sweet vinegar and reduced chicken stock.
Tomorrow – BLT salad with a bacon mayo dressing!
OK, thinking BLT stuffed tomatoes. The filling has to be loose when cooked and this is what I’m thinking:
• Bread crumbs
• Cooked Bacon
• Cheese (dare I say optional?)
• Mayo or Olive oil (Mayo gets a bit gross when warm)
Served on a bed of lettuce (maybe with mayo on the lettuce?)
What do you think?