Dave and I have 3 dinosaurs living in our kitchen. The first is Experimentaurus, the one who spins out wild new recipes which are only sometimes edible. The next is Tastosaurus, perhaps the bravest dinosaur; the taster of new foods. Bravely he/she holds the spoon to his/her snout with his/her tiny arms. The highest level of the three is Inventosaurus. Inventosaurus is like a magical beast wielding rainbows and fire swords: using them to manipulate his stores into edible delights. He/She is the creator of majestic new dishes!
Inventosaurus has decreed that all must share in the delights of his/her sandwiches:
The Plane of Jane
The roasted vegetable sandwich is a pretty common affair. This one is very simple. Roast any assortment of vegetables plus whole cloves of garlic still in their shells. Once the veggies are crispy and good take the softened garlic cloves out of their skins and place them into a bowl with a little olive oil. Mush/mix these up and you have some fine garlic butter. Use this to spread on toasted slices of rye bread before piling on the veggies and fresh sprigs of rocket.
The Food of Nights Past
Last night’s food can make a pretty good sandwich the next day. A few weeks ago I made an awesome lentil bolognaise. By some miracle (Tastosaurus was going a little mad) there was some left over for the next day. It was then that I fantasized up a new brilliant sandwich.
Separate the lentils from their lovely sauce. Place them in a blender and zzzhhoosh them up. Use the goop to make little lentil balls. Place them carefully inside a fresh baguette, on top of salad greens and chopped olives. Now sauce it up with that fine bolognaisy-tomato-liquid. Mmmmmmeatball sub!
An Expat in Mexico
This is by far my favourite sandwich because it contains my favourite new invention: Chipotle Cashew Hummus. Just take a moment to let that sink in. Smokey-spicy chipotle marinating in adobo sauce, blended with a cup of creamy cashew nuts and all the other delightful ingredients that make up hummus – minus the chickpeas.
Slather the goodness on a slice of toasted sourdough, topped with char grilled eggplant and fresh zesty salsa.
Stolen from the Andean
This burger patty comes from here.
(I adjusted it by taking out the eggs, and adding two tablespoons of raw chia seeds and one teaspoon of baking powder. Also- forget the cheese, so unnecessary)
Now that the patties are done, we can build that burger. First we need a good quality bread roll, (Italian ciabatta or a Portuguese roll). Cut that open and toast the inside in a dry frying pan. A good burger needs some whole grain mustard. Next three leaves of lettuce and three of rocket. Oregano-sprinkled-fried-tomato slices go on top of the greens. Next the patty followed by char grilled eggplant slices and caramelized onions. Lastly, we need a little mayonnaise and the top bun of the burger. Serve it with oven roasted potato wedges.
Actually this “burger” doesn’t need any bread at all. Take it away and you have a pretty awesome salad.
This one is for when you feel as tired as a tourist who spent all day taking selfies at Angkor Wat. A sandwich filling which takes five steps: Chop, fry, pop, drizzle, serve.
- Chop- an onion (and slice your bread)
- Fry – the onion and when it turns glassy add a big spoon of curry powder (any bloody curry power you have)
- Pop- open a can of chickpeas, drain them, add them to the onion.
- Drizzle- 2 tablespoons of coconut cream on and let it simmer for a few moments.
- Serve- on any bloody bread you have or in a wrap or just eat it out of the pan if you can’t be bothered.
Sandwich in a Bowl
This next one is a combo of a Jamie Oliver recipe and my own brain. First you will need the soup, one of Jamie’s best bloody inventions. Look here.
Now some adjustments to that recipe: Roast your own peppers in the oven (don’t use jar peppers-so much cheaper) Use thick coconut cream instead of yoghurt (the flavour is more powerful) and add (if you can) a chipotle pepper and a tablespoon of adobo sauce.
Ok Soup is sorted, now let’s make good on the tortilla chips part- I like to make my own. Chop some fresh mint and garlic and put them in a bowl with a drop of vinegar, a pinch of ground paprika and drown them in olive oil. Next step is to brush the mixture over a few tortillas and put them in the oven whole. Once they are crispy, break them up into chunks and serve with the soup.
My favourite breakfast bread is an old fashioned hash brown. I buy the big square ones from the supermarket freezer. Every morning you can see a sleepy-eyed David throwing frozen blocks of potato into the oven before putting on the kettle (because he is a champion of the morning). I know these have little to no nutritional value, but I don’t care because it’s what you serve it with that matters.
I love a good tofu scramble; there are many recipes and variations. My favourite is simple: finely chopped tomato, onion and green pepper; a teaspoon of mustard; a tablespoon of chia seeds and a block of firm tofu. Scramble the mixture up and let the chia seeds soak up the water from the tofu. Heat it in a pan with a tiny bit of olive oil.
Serve it with the hash browns and hot fresh coffee.
Too Many Mind
This is the best sandwich in the world. It is the sandwich of “no mind”. It’s also something I can only dream of – no avocados in Cambodia.
Toasted dumpy bread, topped with slices of perfectly ripe avo, seasoned with cracked salt and pepper.
No mind. Click here to view
The First Inventosaurus of Dave
Dave and I have been cooking together for seven sweet months. He is a man of many talents and cooking is just one of them. Over the months he has held the Experimentaurus status with pride, until one fine/desperate day. The day he had to go to his first Braai (BBQ) as a vegetarian. With the idea of Braai broodjies (BBQ toasted sandwiches) as inspiration he invented the Braai Hashkie.
For one Hashkie you need: two hash browns sliced salted eggplant, tomato, spring onion, spinach leaves and cheese (also good with vegan cheese). Make a sandwich with the ingredients still raw and season it with salt, pepper and dried thyme. Wrap the Hashkie in foil and put it on the braai, turning occasionally.
Re-imagined Oreo Cookie
Moving onto the sweeter sort of sandwich, the Oreo with a twist. I used this recipe for the ‘cookie’ part and the ‘filling’ part. Click Here
There are only two alterations here: One, go slow with that lemon juice, add a little and taste each time before adding more. Two, go cray cray and actually make a giant Oreo cookie.
I.e. cookie base
ganache (very optional)
cream cheese filling
Hmmmm it seems that the dinosaurs are herbivores. Did you notice? I didn’t.
To read more of Jessica’s blogs, click here:
Jessica Lahoud was the founding chef at Plant Café and is affectionately known as Plant Inventasourus.