Monday, July 20, 2015

Picnic BLTs

Several things in this great life give me great happiness, and I feel so lucky that I got to enjoy a few of my favorites, all squished into one night last week.  A picnic at Chatauqua Park in Boulder with girlfriends, before catching one of my favorite musical groups, The Indigo Girls, play at the auditorium at Chatauqua (which after Red Rocks is my most favorite of concert venues as it feels so very much like the mess hall at the summer camp I grew up at).  Oh, and I made BLTs for said picnic, so that is a grand tally of 4 of my favorites, in one night.

BLTs are classic.  They are summer.  They are picnic.  But...are you like me and are kind of ruded out by how soggy the bread is by the time you open your picnic basket, because of the (delicious, summer time favorite, for reals...just not here) tomatoes?  Well, I solved that problem years ago with delicious sun-dried tomato mayonnaise.

What you need:
3 T brown sugar
cracked black pepper
sun-dried tomatoes
loaf of bread (ciabatta was my pick)
lettuce greens

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and a piece of parchment paper.
Place bacon and sprinkle with 3 T brown sugar and a very generous
crack of black pepper.

Bake in a 375 preheated oven for 20-23 minutes. If you 
want crisper bacon, watch oven closely as the sugar
will cause a quick burn, towards the end of bake time.

Delicious peppery, sweet bacon!  This is after 20 minutes bake time.

I promptly prop the baking sheet, so all the bacon grease will
drain off to the bottom, as it is impossible to 'blot' bacon that
has been baked in sugar...unless you love eating 
delicious peppery, sweet, PAPER coated bacon!

 Place 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes (drained) and 1 cup mayonnaise
in a food processor.  Pulse until the tomatoes are fully 
broken down and incorporated throughout.

This recipe will make much more that you will need for this Picnic
BLT, but be prepared to thank me as it is good on everything!

 I placed the sun-dried tomato mayonnaise in the deli container that
first housed the oil soaked tomatoes.  I did drain off most of the oil
before pulsing, but did not think to wipe the container clean.
But...a little sun-dried tomato infused oil will do zero harm to
this goodness.

I like to make in advance to allow the flavors to love each other up,
at least over night.

 Holy Toledo, this might be the best store bought 'artisan' bread
ever.  I picked it up at King Soopers (Krogers).

I used a serrated knife to slice the loaf in half, then popped it in the
oven (with the loaf closed up) to allow the outside to toast up a bit.
350 degrees for 8- 10 minutes.  It was good and crusty on the
outside when I pulled it out.  I then opened and gave the bread 10 minutes
to cool down then generously slathered the bread with the sun-dried
tomato mayonnaise.

Layer on the candied bacon and a huge, heaping pile of greens.

 No words!  Cut how you wish OR pretend you are Rodney
Dangerfield in the 'sandwich scene' from Back to School
and eat the whole thing!  Here is the clip from the movie, if you
are all like, this B be crazy!

I wrapped each cut of sandwich in parchment.

The sandwiches joined iced coffee, palmier cookies and raspberry
and dark chocolate brownie & mousse trifles, as my picnic
contributions.  My girlfriends and I were so on point with our
picnic planning that our spread was one for the books.
I will later blog the palmier and trifle recipes, but until then
try these legit BLTs! Oh, and as usual...The Indigo Girls
were AmazeFest!


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