Who am I to tell you how to make a sandwich?
Oh… just a girl who loves bacon and brown sugar and toasted pecans.
I’ll tell you the secrets to the perfect BLT sandwich:
candy the bacon // toast the bread // spice the mayo // add just about too much mayo to the sandwich // season the tomatoes // and the biggest secret of all: have someone else make the sandwich for you.
Sandwiches taste best when someone else makes them. It’s just a law of the universe. Conversely, a sandwich is the most generous gift you can offer someone, besides diamonds.
Now, in this, the strangest of all summers – we’re doing the most with the least. We’re taking the most simple and delicious sandwich and taking it completely over the top just because… becasuse we can’t wear cute outfits and lipstick and hang out together this year.
Here’s what you’ll need:
• thick sliced bacon – that good stuff.
• brown sugar, finely chopped pecans, and black pepper to praline our bacon.
• tomatoes – gosh if you have homegrown tomatoes that would be a dream!
• butter lettuce or really any green you prefer for your sandwich.
• salt and pepper to season our masterpiece.
• sourdough slices or any bread you prefer.
• mayonnaise and hot sauce for flavor flair.
First, line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and bake slices of bacon for 10 minutes or so.
While the bacon bakes, mix together the praline topping.
Sprinkle it atop the partially baked bacon and… here’s where it gets good!
The bacon will bake to crisp, browned, bubbling, and completely pralined.
It’s candy. It’s bacon. It’s everything we want. It’s all about to go on our sandwich.
Now here’s the thing, we’re asking everything from this sandwich. We want sweet, spicy, salty – we want it all.
Add hot sauce (I love Crystal here) and a sprinkle of garlic powder to the mayonnaise to add a spicy bite to compliment the candied bacon.
Season the sliced tomatoes with salt and pepper to accentuate their flavor.
I also like to allow the tomatoes to rest on a few sheets of paper towel to absorb some of their liquid before adding to the sandwich.
Toast the bread or don’t – however you want to live.
Smear generously with spicy mayonnaise.
Layer bacon, butter lettuce, and seasoned tomatoes. Pile it as high as your hunger.
Simple, yet completely extra.
That’s what we’re doing this summer. We’re doing the most with the very least. This sandwich says it all.
Photos with my dear Jon Melendez.Print
For the Praline Bacon:
- 12 pieces thick bacon
- 2 tablespoon finely chopped pecans
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
For the Sandwich:
- 2 ripe summer tomatoes
- Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper
- Butter lettuce
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- A few dashes of hot sauce (I like Crystal or Louisiana Hot Sauce)
- pinch of garlic powder
- 4 to 6 slices of sour dough or whatever bread you like.
- First make the praline bacon. Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and lay bacon slices in a single layer across the pan. Bake for 10 minutes.
- In a small bowl toss together pecans sugar and black pepper. Sprinkle in an even layer over the partially cooked bacon. Bake for another 10 to 12 minutes until browned and bubbling. Remove from the oven and as soon as you can handle the slices, transfer to a wire rack over a few pieces or paper towel or a plate. If you place them directly on paper towel, they’ll stick to the paper as the cool.
- To assemble the sandwich, slice tomatoes and allow to rest on a double layer of paper towel or a clean lint-free kitchen towel. Flip once. Season tomato slices with salt and pepper.
- In a small bowl stir together mayo and a few dashes of hot sauce and a sprinkle of garlic powder.
- To assemble the sandwiches, toast the bread lightly (or don’t – it’s your sandwich). Spread both slices generously with spicy mayonnaise. Layer with 3 or 4 slices of bacon, seasoned tomatoes, lettuce, and the top of the bread. Give it a little smash, slice it in half if you’d like and enjoy!