Midweek Meals: January 4, 2012

This week’s meals draw inspiration from a recent NYTimes blog post about Tamar Adler’s An Everlasting Meal: Cooking with Economy and Grace:

The comforting lesson from An Everlasting Meal is that we already know plenty about feeding ourselves, and we don’t need to complicate things by trying to create something extraordinary every time we cook.

Your Relay blogging correspondent actually received this book for Christmas, but has yet to explore its pages. Based on the post’s description, it sounds like Adler’s is a worthy perspective for all of us to adopt in the New Year!

Drawing on Adler and inspired by our chat with Maureen of Mimi’s Whole Grain, this week’s recipes are some of the most creative sandwich adaptations we could find. They’re excellent and easy, yet delicious, standbys that you can make quickly, so you’ll have time to pursue your other New Year’s resolutions, whatever they may be.

If you think you might want some accompaniment, make a big pot of the Best Vegetable Soup Ever, or roast some vegetables ahead of time.

This Week’s Key Ingredients:

winter’s leafy greens, whole grain bread, butternut squash

The Recipes:

  • Thursday: Warm open-faced sandwich with local melted cheddar, thinly sliced Fuji apples, a drizzle of honey – pair with a glass of chardonnay and a green salad. (Maureen of Mimi’s Whole Grain)
  • Friday: Sauteed Kale, Roasted Sweet Potato, and Poached Egg Holiday Toast – sub butternut squash for sweet potato and cheddar for pecorino (Food 52)
  • Monday: Open-Face Salmon Sandwich with Sweet Mustard Sauce (Steamy Kitchen)
  • Tuesday: Egg Salad Sandwich – a delicious, revelatory take on the standard (101Cookbooks)
  • Wednesday: roasted butternut squash mashed and seasoned with a little sea salt, ground black pepper and extra virgin olive oil, topped with caramelized onions, ground walnuts, goat cheese and seasonal greens (inspired by a sandwich at Peacefood Cafe in NYC)

The Strategy:

  • Friday, Roast all of the butternut squash you will need for Friday and Wednesday recipes. As Adler’s book points out, vegetables don’t have to be fresh-roasted the day they’re used.  Use butternut squash in place of sweet potatoes and cheddar instead of pecorino.  Substitute honey for maple syrup, unless you have the latter on hand.
  • Monday, Hard-boil enough eggs to make both the salmon sandwich and the egg salad for Tuesday night. Substitute white onion for red.
  • Tuesday, if desired, you can add leftover shallots to your egg salad.

The Shopping List:

(one-click in Charlottesville and Richmond)

Vegetables (and fruits)
  • 2 medium butternut squashes
  • 2 Fuji apples
  • 1 piece fresh ginger
  • 1 bunch kale
  • 1 shallot
  • 3-4 small white onions
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 lemon, or 1/2 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1 local hydroponic tomato
  • Enough salad greens for sandwiches and side salads
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1/2 bunch of chives
Shelf-stable pantry items
  • 1 cup chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 tsp. capers
  • About 1/4 cup walnuts
Meats and Dairy
  • One block of local cheddar
  • Goat cheese
  • One dozen local free-range eggs
  • One 4-oz. salmon filet per person
  • One or two Tbsp. mayonnaise or Greek yogurt
  • One loaf of your favorite whole grain bread
Pantry Items – not on the one-click lists
  • Unsalted butter
  • Olive oil or vegetable oil
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Nutmeg
  • Honey
  • Dijon mustard

Find a few more creative sandwiches on our Pinterest board and at Whole Living. What’s your go-to sandwich creation?

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Relay Foods is the healthy online grocery store. We make shopping for quality, healthy, and sustainable groceries simple and easy. Shop from your computer or mobile phone and receive your groceries the next day! Relay Foods currently serves customers in Central Virginia, Maryland, Washington DC, and North Carolina’s Triangle region.