Wednesday, June 23, 2010
farmers' market sandwich creation
sandwich with both parts of the radish
I don't know if you've noticed, but I tend to improvise a lot in the kitchen. That's why you won't find a lot of recipes in my posts, but rather more free form explanations of what I've been up to in the kitchen. This might be frustrating if you're not super comfortable in the kitchen and you are looking for more exact instructions on how to replicate our meals at home, but I do always link to the recipes that were my jumping off point, so hopefully this isn't too much of a problem.
Anyway, my point is that even though I don't worry too much about following a recipe exactly, I almost have one (or two), that I am using as a guide. Therefore, when I come up with a dish entirely on my own, it is kind of thrilling, even if it is only a simple sandwich, like the one I am going to talk about today.
Going on three weeks ago now, back when Nathan and I were still doing our Master Meals series, he suggested I swing by the Union Square Market on Saturday afternoon so we could make Jonathan Waxman's famous chicken on Wednesday. I thought this was a good idea, but by the time I got down there, the chicken vendors were gone, and we never did get around to making more Master Meals.
What I did make was this delicious sandwich, inspired by the bounty of the late spring farmers' market:
fried eggs and goat cheese atop radishes
Thin-as-I-could-slice-'em radishes, creamy salted goat cheese, a runny fried egg and sauteed radish tops atop a crusty roll. All freshly bought down in Union Square and prepared with a minimum of heat and thus ideal for a hot summer day. What was especially great about this light little meal was that it all kind of came together in my head organically, (no pun intended), as I wandered the market.
"A huge bunch of radishes for a dollar? Those would be great marinated with oil and vinegar, salt and pepper and served on some buttered bread, and I can cook the greens up with some lemon juice. But how can I make this more of a full meal? Eggs for $2.25 a dozen? Oh, a HALF dozen? Expensive, but now I want to make egg sandwiches, so let's just go for it... Oh look! They are closing up for the night so a bag of four rolls is only two bucks! Anything else? There's goat cheese. I love goat cheese. Four ounces for $5. Great!"
This all came together brilliantly. The radish slices gave it crunch, and the buttery bread and runny eggs richness. Nathan made the astute observation that the lemon in the greens mixed with the egg yolk made it taste a bit like hollandaise sauce, and the goat cheese was the perfect creamy, last minute addition. These sandwiches were so good, I'm even going to write up my approximations of a formal recipe so those of you playing along at home can make this yourselves. So, without further ado:
"The Garlicus Maximus" – Whole Radish Sandwiches on Garlic Bread with Goat Cheese and a Fried Egg
makes 2 sandwiches
the green tops from a large bunch of radishes
2-3 medium to large sized radishes
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
freshly ground pepper
½ a lemon, juiced
½ a stick butter at room temperature, plus extra for frying eggs
2 cloves garlic
1½ tbsp goat cheese
1. Wash the radishes, removing the greens and setting them aside. Slice the radishes as thin as you can. (I don't have a mandolin, but I imagine it would be helpful in this situation.)
2. Mix the olive oil and vinegar in a small bowl and add the sliced radishes and a generous amount of salt and pepper. Let marinate while you make the rest of the sandwich.
3. Smash the garlic cloves into a paste. You can use a mortar and pestle to do this, or you can scrape the clove with the side of your paring knife. Mix the garlic into the softened butter.
4. Slice your rolls in half and spread the garlic butter on both sides. Toast in the oven or toaster oven until golden brown.
5. Saute the radish greens until wilted over medium low heat in a frying pan. They should still be wet from when you washed them, which will prevent them from burning in the hot pan, but you can heat up a little oil or butter before you add the greens. Add lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.
6. Fry two eggs and season with salt and pepper.
7. Assemble the sandwiches. Layer the thinly slice radishes on one half of the sandwich, and the lemony greens on the other. Pour a little of the left over vinegar and oil mixture over the sliced radishes. Spread a goat cheese over the radish slices, and top the greens with the eggs. Crack a little black pepper onto the cheese. Fold to close, and enjoy.
soon to be devoured sandwich
PS: If you are, in fact, playing along at home, or even just reading along, drop us a line. I'd love to hear how our recipes turn out back in your kitchen, and it's great to get feedback. Kthxbye.