Sunday, 17 May 2009

Recipe: BLT - I did it my way

Leafing through Alfred Portale's Twelve Seasons Cookbook : A Month-by-Month Guide to the Best There is to Eat
gave me the inspiration for this dish. He's one of the few top ranking chefs that I know of that includes sandwich recipes in his books and 12 Seasons has a couple of crackers includng prociutto, pear, arugala and honey mustard, and grilled potato, Roquefort, red onion and smoked bacon (how good does that sound?). It set me thinking about how I could make that old favourite BLT into a main course.

I replaced white bread with griddled pain de campagne, spread with tomato compote (inspired by the heavenly tomato bruschetta served as a freebie at Theo Randall's excellent London restaurant) and topped with braised lettuce and a bacon chop instead of bacon rashers. I served the open sandwich with sweet potato wedges spiced with cumin, paprika and cayenne and a creme fraiche dip (actually Richard Corriagan's creme fraiche, olive oil, lemon and mint dressing from The Clatter of Forks and Spoons) which I had left over from the previous night's dinner, although I would recommend replacing the mint with basil for this dish.

Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato

serves 4

for the tomato compote

1 red onion finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
350g cherry tomatoes
salt and pepper
teaspoon caster sugar

for the braised lettuce

25g butter
4 spring onions, sliced
2 baby gem lettuces, trimmed and cut in half lengthways
200ml chicken stock
salt and pepper

4 bacon chops
freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

4 slices pain de campagne
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper

For the tomato compote, heat the oil in a pan and saute the onion until soft but not coloured. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes, salt and pepper and sugar and cook over a gentle heat until the tomatoes break down and form a sauce.

For the lettuces, heat the butter in a pan and sweat the spring onions until soft, add the lettuce and cook until slightly wilted, turning once. Pour over the stock and simmer over a gentle heat until the lettuce is tender.

Heat a griddle pan until smoking. Season the bread with salt and pepper and brush with the oil on both sides. Griddle until nicely coloured.

Season the chops with pepper and brush with oil and cook under a hot grill until the fat sizzles, turning once.

Place a slice of grilled bread on each plate, spread a quarter of the tomato compote on each and top with a lettuce quarter and finally a bacon chop.


2 comments:

David Hall said...

Sounds lush Andy. Check out my BLAT on the Blog

Cheers
David

Andy Lynes said...

Looks terrific - great minds think alike-ish!