Thursday, July 11, 2013

BLT with Avocado and Basil Mayonnaise


Half a foot down, three and a half feet of bread to go!  The next thing I made with the baguette was a BLT with avocado and basil mayonnaise, inspired by this recipe from The Kitchn.  Coincidentally, that same day there was a post on The Kitchn about how to cook perfect bacon on the stovetop by adding enough water to cover the bottom of the pan.

I tried the method, and it worked really well!  The water keeps the temperature of the bacon at a relatively low 212°F until it boils away so that the fat can render out without splattering.  Then once the water has evaporated the temperature in the pan climbs so that the bacon can brown and crisp up.  You can (and should!) save the bacon fat after the bacon is done to use in other recipes (stay tuned for French toast cooked in bacon fat).

The original recipe for the "California" BLT called for using plain slices of avocado in the sandwich, but I decided to mash half an avocado along with some salt and lemon juice to make a really simple guacamole and used that as a spread on the bread instead.  Heehee, that rhymed.


BLT with Avocado and Basil Mayonnaise (adapted from The Kitchn)
makes 2 sandwiches

For the Basil Mayonnaise:
2 tablespoons packed basil leaves
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon lemon juice
1 small garlic clove, chopped
Zest of half a lemon
1/4 cup mayonnaise


In a small food processor, combine the basil, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic and lemon zest. Process until finely chopped and relatively smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally. (Large, tough basil leaves will probably stay fairly chunky, which is fine.)


Place the mayonnaise in a small bowl and whisk in the basil mixture until thoroughly combined.

For the BLT:
1/2 avocado
1 teaspoon lemon juice
A pinch of salt
6 slices bacon
12 inch baguette, cut in half and split horizontally
1 tomato, the best you can find
2 handfuls chopped lettuce
1/4 cup Basil Mayonnaise


Scoop out the avocado into a small bowl.  Add the lemon juice and salt and mash together.  Set aside.


In a large, unheated skillet, add the bacon and enough water to completely cover the bottom of the pan.  Turn the heat to medium and allow the water to come to a boil.  Once the water has evaporated, continue to cook the bacon until the bottom has browned.  Flip the bacon using tongs and cook until crisp.  Drain on a plate lined with paper towels. 


Slice the tomatoes.


Spread the basil mayonnaise on the bottom half of bread.  Top with the lettuce, tomato, and bacon. 


Spread the mashed avocado on the other half of bread and place on top.  Enjoy!


I really liked how the chewy texture of the baguette went well with the crispiness of the bacon and lettuce and the creaminess of the avocado.  You can make this with plain white sandwich bread, too, but then I'd suggest toasting the bread so that it can stand up to all the fillings.

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