Lately I have been craving a bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich. I think probably that is due because of the freshly picked tomatoes that have stared at me every day, asking me ‘What are you going to do with me?’.
Growing up, the BLT was always around. Typically, plain old white bread, toasted, served with a bit of mayonnaise, bacon, lettuce, and tomato, or heck, in my case Bacon and lettuce sandwich as I did not begin to really enjoy tomatoes until I was in my late twenties. Simple, and delicious. Not only is the BLT easy to make, but there is a satisfaction in every bite. There is something very comforting about the sandwich, probably because there is bacon on the sandwich, but I think there is more to it. So recently, I decided to take my tomato, and pair it with some great lettuce and some slow cooked bacon to make what I think, or should I say, what my wife thinks could be the best BLT sandwich she has ever had, and I think I agree with that.
- 6 slices of good bacon
- 4 thick slices of cheese bread
- 4 leaves of Boston lettuce (often referred to as Bibb, or Butterhead)
- 1 large tomato, preferably from your garden, thick sliced, preferably 2 slices per sandwich
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
- 4 tbsp of mayonnaise
- Zest of one lemon
- 1 tbsp freshly chopped basil
- Salt and Pepper
Begin by heating a large skillet on medium-low heat. Add the bacon to the skillet, and sprinkle a bit of cracked pepper onto each slice of bacon. While this is cooking (roughly 15-20 minutes), make your lemon basil mayonnaise. To a small bowl add the mayonnaise, lemon zest, and chopped basil. Mix, and set in the refrigerator until you are ready to prepare your sandwiches. Next, clean your lettuce, and make sure you dry it really well. Slice your tomatoes to your desired thickness. Turn your bacon, and continue to cook on the other side. I tend to cook my bacon, just until both sides are cooked through, but not too crisp, nor too fatty. Once the bacon is cooked, remove and place on a plate lined with paper towel to let any fat drain.
Now it is time to toast the bread. I use a cheese bread not only because of the great flavor, but the cheese melts a bit when you toast it, and adds a really great texture. Spread the butter onto the slices of bread, only on one side. Toast these on another skillet until a nice, golden brown. The time we have been waiting for, the time to prepare and serve.
Take your toasted bread, using the toasted side as the outside of your sandwich, and smear about a tablespoon of the lemon basil mayonnaise onto the bread. Cut the bacon in half and layer the bottom of the bread with six slices of bacon. Top the bacon with lettuce, then tomato. Sprinkle a bit of salt and pepper on top of the tomatoes. Take another piece of bacon and place on top of the tomatoes. To the remaining slice of bread, smear another tablespoon of the mayonnaise on to it, and place on the top, finalizing your BLT.
This BLT is something else. The flavor of the lemon basil mayonnaise is enough to rock your world, but the smokiness of the bacon, the buttery flavor of the lettuce, and the freshness from your garden, all on this cheese bread. Enough said. Make it and I can probably guarantee this might be one of your top ten sandwiches.