Dexter is always great about happily eating what I cook. Even when what I cook is frozen pizzas all week long. Sometimes, though, something goes especially right, and Dexter doesn’t stop talking about a meal for days. That’s a good feeling!
Thursday night was one of those inspiration-filled nights. On the menu: a toasted hummus sandwich, coleslaw, and fries. Here’s how it happened:
My Aunt Amy gave me a copy of an America’s Test Kitchen cookbook that she had accidentally ordered. What luck for me! I am not a coleslaw afficionado, so I needed a simple, normal seeming recipe to follow. ATK recommends salting the cabbage and carrots and letting them sit for anywhere between one and four hours to help them lose some of their water. I only let mine sit for an hour. That wasn’t enough, because no water came out of mine at all. It did come out in the fridge over the next two days and make the leftovers watery. I’ll leave more time for de-waterizing next time.
I cut up two potatoes into french fry sized pieces, tossed them with olive oil, salt, and rosemary. I baked them at 400 degrees for about 40 minutes. I didn’t pay too much attention to the time, but checked them frequently and scraped them off the bottom of the pan.
I caramelized half an onion to top the sandwiches. The other half was diced small and went in the coleslaw.
After the fries were done, I broiled one side of four piece of bread. The bread was whole wheat artisan bread from New Pi and it was delicious. I kept a really close eye on the bread, but decided to give it 30 more seconds to brown while I made the hummus in the food processor. That was too much time, and I burnt the bread. You can see the charred crumbs I scraped off in the pan.
Then I assembled the sandwiches. I spread hummus on the toasted side of one pice of bread. Then came the caramelized onions, little chunks of mozzarella cheese, and baby spinach. I put a little Veganaise on the matching piece of bread and we were ready to “grill.”
I was too lazy to get the George Foreman grill out of the closet upstairs. I used the pan from caramelizing the onions, added some butter, and toasted the sandwiches. The sandwiches toasted just fine, I didn’t have to clean the George Foreman, and I pressed them with the back of my spatula. I don’t recommend using your hand as a panini press, you know, just in case you wanted to try that.
Here is the crummy picture of my finished product. I think I need to invest in a tripod for my flash-free pictures and bring our worklight up from the basement. Dexter was super excited to eat this! The coleslaw and fries were really economical dishes. Cabbage is on the list of “don’t bother to buy organic” foods, and carrots aren’t on the “dirty dozen” list, so they were cheap from Fareway. I did buy organic potatoes, but they were well under $1/lb. Often, I can find them for $2/5lb. I made the hummus myself from dried chickpeas I cooked at home, so that was pretty economical, too. My biggest splurges were the bread from New Pi and the Veganaise. I’m going to look around for different kinds of all-natural mayonnaise to see if I can find anything cheaper, but we were really pleased with the quality of Veganaise.
Dexter ate the coleslaw for lunch on Friday and Saturday, and I definitely racked up a lot of “wife points” for it. Dexter made these hummus sandwiches for lunch on Saturday. His were way better than mine because he used way more cheese than I did. So, if you’re not concerned about your saturated fat intake, I definitely recommend doing it his way!