« Smak-Tak | Main | Keeping It Simple »

November 24, 2009

Tabled For Discussion

Mortadella Sandwich Dominic Armato

New favorite lunchtime sandwich:

Mortadella with Asiago, Roasted Garlic Jam and Hot Chinese Mustard.

Currently awesome, but I'm thinking it's a crispy fruit or vegetable away from being perfect. Whaddya think? Thin slices of Honeycrisp apple? A handful of arugula? Maybe some shredded fresh basil? I'm open to suggestions.

UPDATE : I ended up trying both apple and Asian pear, with and without arugula. Pickled onion held some momentary fascination, but I think that'd be a little to sharp for this sandwich. Anyway, I think the arugula was key, and I preferred the Asian pear to the Honeycrisp (thanks, Zyfsv!). The Honeycrisp was a bit of a scene stealer. The Asian pear, though, gave that bit of crunch, a subtle bit of fruitiness, and it blended right in.

Now we'll see how many of these I can eat for lunch before I get sick of 'em.

Comments

FYI, the Honeycrisp was invented at the University of Minnesota.

I'm not sayin' -- I'm just sayin'. One could call it the Brett Favre of apples.

Considering my reaction when I read the description was "All that needs is a bit of apple, and it's awesome", I'm going with the Honeycrisp, but only if it's ripe.

"FYI, the Honeycrisp was invented at the University of Minnesota.

I'm not sayin' -- I'm just sayin'. One could call it the Brett Favre of apples."

Well, since I'm from Chicago, I'd prefer to call it the... um... Jim Harb-- no... um... okay, you got me.

Crisp, fresh iceberg lettuce. Adds the crisp, crunch and texture without getting in the way of and over-complicating the flavors.

Apple slices speak to me.

While I don't doubt that apple slices will be good, I say arugula. I think the pepper flavor it brings will pair nicely with what appears to be a salt heavy combo.

Also, what bread? Or does it not matter?

mcharm, how do you always get one of the first comments in? Do you have some sort of notification sent to you when the site is updated?

I'm currently adding pickled thai chilis to everything I eat.

I think basil would be too much. The honeycrisp is definitely a most beloved apple to this Minnesota partisan! But you might as well give more of them a try. Thin slices of cortland or fuji might work. And I just tried one called the candy crisp for the first time this year. It's a beauty!

Arugula is like my favorite thing, but with the spicy mustard, I dunno, maybe not balanced?

Hey why not both apples & arugula? Gotta give it a whirl anyway.

What about grapes?

I was thinking Honeycrisp because with the jam, I wanted to avoid anything too sweet, and I wanted a really nice, crisp bite.

I'm definitely leaning thin slices of Honeycrisp and arugula... because I think it could also use something green (flavor, not color, the latter being incidental).

But yeah, it's an open floor. Those were just my first thoughts. Sky's the limit.

I actually thought of iceberg lettuce as well, Duffy.

I'm an iceberg defender. There are plenty of places where nothing else will do. But for reasons I can't explain, this just doesn't feel like one of them to me.

It seems clear from the three things you suggested that it's not just texture you are after -- all three of your suggestions have flavor as well as texture. Iceberg's flavor seems too mild for what you are proposing, which I imagine is why you don't think it belongs here.

"It seems clear from the three things you suggested that it's not just texture you are after -- all three of your suggestions have flavor as well as texture. Iceberg's flavor seems too mild for what you are proposing, which I imagine is why you don't think it belongs here."

Oh, absolutely true. It's not pure texture I'm looking for. But it could use one more flavor and some texture would really help it out.

What about a thin slice of asian pear..... just a thought

"What about a thin slice of asian pear..... just a thought"

Winner.

Almost all sandwiches could be improved with thinly-sliced cucumber...

Dom, I have to commend you on your performance as a food-p0rn0grapher. That is one tasty-looking sandwich.

The roasted garlic jam is what's throwing me off - I have no idea what it tastes like, and have no idea what would pair with it. You've got hot, salty, sweet (I assume), so besides texture, are you looking for... acid?

i also vote for cucumber

or pickle

pickled red onion, maybe? like red onion with just a bit of a sweet, vinegary snap. sliced really thin.

barely brined cabbage with a bit of caraway seed

Having looked at a few recipes online, I have a better feel for what the garlic jam tastes like. The thing is, some recipes call for an acid like lemon juice or balsamic vinegar, and some are mixed in with caramelized onions or other ingredients. What kind of jam are we talking about?

Here's something completely out of left field - what about toasted pine nuts? There's a natural sweetness to the nuts which I think might pair well with the garlic, and their size/texture could add a nice crunch without changing the fundamental character of the sandwich too much.

Last, if anyone's got Douglas Adams in their library, now would be a great time to quote the description of the Sandwich Maker and his art.

I tend to think avocado improves just about any sandwich. In this case, though, I'd go for the apple or Asian pair. Apple, roasted garlic and asiago sounds like a divine trio. I adore arugula, but I can't see it in this context. Too overpowering?

So what's it going to be?!

I would go with fried onion rings (not the kind out of the can that will be used and abused for Thanksgiving green bean casseroles, but the real deal). I think adding something hot/warm to the sandwich would be a winner.

I meant to say "adding something hot/warm and crunchy to the sandwich".

Hey - I know you're not a Baltimore blogger anymore, but I've given you A Major Award! Click here for details.

My first thought was "something pickled" - although, to be fair, that's often my first thought when it comes to food.

But I really like the suggestion of thin slices of pickled red onion. To me, this doesn't feel like a sandwich that needs fruit.

As another Minnesotan, I believe you can't go wrong with a Honeycrisp... however... one of the best sandwiches I've ever had is a ham and poached pear sandwich (at Hells Kitchen), so I could imagine pears working well too.

http://blogs.citypages.com/food/2009/03/epic_sandwich_h.php

Dom, I think I speak for many readers when I say a follow-up post is now expected with the results. Perhaps you can make several sandwiches and then do a taste off and discuss the results.

"The Honeycrisp was a bit of a scene stealer."

I can see that. Brett Favre does have a tendency of stealing the show.

"mcharm, how do you always get one of the first comments in? Do you have some sort of notification sent to you when the site is updated?"

It's a sixth -- maybe even a seventh -- sense.

"one of the best sandwiches I've ever had is a ham and poached pear sandwich (at Hells Kitchen)"

That just made the to do list...

Have you thought of using jicama?

"Have you thought of using jicama?"

I have, actually, but I nixed it on the basis that I don't see the starchiness working here.

Post a comment

If you have a TypeKey or TypePad account, please Sign In.