Jul 17, 2012

~ summer sandwich

I suck at dieting. The fact that I don't particularly like very many healthy foods is definitely a major component of the problem. However, every once in a while, I am interested in something healthy and delicious. As this is a rare occurrence, I am overcome with the need to share the excitement of said healthy and delicious something.

Check it out:
So beautiful, how could it not be delicious? 

The recipe below is from House Beautiful hereI thought goat cheese sounded like a good substitute for the ricotta. To me, ricotta is lasagna cheese. I happen to love goat cheese. As in LOVE. This was an easy exchange, an obvious pick. I bet there are other options resulting in an equally decadent and delicious outcome.
To be sure, I did a taste test with goat cheese and ricotta...

Ricotta on the top, goat cheese on the bottom, each mixed with olive oil, lemon zest and S&P...

Add avocado...

Add tomato...

Add pearl red onion...

Add toasted sesame seeds, poppy seeds, lemon skin, and olive oil drizzle... Tada!


Serves 4
1 pound (scant 2 cups) fresh ricotta
Zest of 2 lemons
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus 4 teaspoons for drizzling
2 pinches coarse kosher salt
1 pinch ground black pepper
4 long, even slices of very good bread
2 large, perfectly ripe avocados (approximately 18 ounces), at room temperature
1 pint mixed-color grape tomatoes, cut in half horizontally (you won't use quite the entire pint)
8 red pearl onions equaling 2-3 ounces, thinly sliced into rounds (or equivalent in thinly sliced red onion)
4 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds
Skin of 1 preserved lemon, flesh removed, finely diced
½ teaspoon toasted poppy seeds


1. Mix the ricotta with the lemon zest, ¼ cup olive oil, and salt and pepper, and set aside.
2. Arrange slices of bread on a cutting board and divide the ricotta mixture evenly among the four slices. Spread into a generous even layer.
3. Split the avocados, remove the pits, and slice each half into even slices without cutting all the way through the leathery skin. Then, with a soup spoon or a flexible rubber spatula, release the flesh and arrange the slices neatly and evenly among the bread slices.
4. Artfully and attractively arrange the tomatoes by nesting them into the soft avocado. Then arrange the red onion slices over the tomatoes.
5. Garnish each sandwich with the sesame seeds, the preserved lemon skin, and finally, the poppy seeds. Transfer to plates and drizzle with olive oil.

I spotted this image and recipe while reading about House Beautiful's Kitchen of the Year, its annual design and culinary showcase, which happens to be this week, Monday through Friday, July 16-20. The kitchen designer is Mick De Giulio. I referenced his kitchens for any and all kitchen design decisions while building my house over a decade ago. I happen to be in New York this week, and just might stop in and see the Kitchen of the Year! 

In the mean time, do enjoy this healthy and delicious summer sandwich!

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Jennifer @ Belclaire House said...

That looks soo yummy! I suck at dieting too. I'm trying to lose my last 10 lbs of "babyweight" and it's soo hard. I spent the last week semi-dieting (not really) & lost .5 lb. Meanwhile my husband skipped lunch because he didn't feel well and lost 3 lbs! That was after he ate a big plate of chinese food. I couldn't even look at him I was so mad. Ha!

carolyn bradford said...

Good heavens! This looks divine! Goat cheese is my favorite thing in the whole world so I would use it as well! Thanks for sharing this yummy looking summer recipe!

Leslie said...

Hi Jan!

This looks perfect! Easy, satisfying, healthy.. perfect for healthy eating. That's what really works, right?

Enjoy your day!


BRASWELL said...

My mouth is watering!+ beautiful pictures. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

Things That Inspire said...

I saw this in HB and thought it looked divine - our local grocery store makes great sourdough bread, and I thought it would be good with feta (I despise goat cheese - one of the few things I can't deal with).

I think my health fanatic daughter would like this one!

- Holly