How to turn a sandwich into a $12 meal was, I think, the project of the fern bars of the 1970s. Put it on a croissant and add avocado, voila, something not necessarily good to eat but expensive.

Restaurants are still making money on the very composed sandwich, and I fall for one every once in a while. Last fall it was the roasted carrots, goat cheese and tapenade on black sesame bread I ganked from Alice’s Tea Cup in Manhattan (who has a mouthwateringly creative sammie menu).

I came across another staggering composed sandwich the other day, and I am making dahl to recreate it. Leftover dahl will be part of my new Mediterranean diet regime of fish, fish, fish, and beans and greens. A recent New England Journal of Medicine study showed the Mediterranean diet reduces stroke and heart attack by 30 per cent. I remember an awesome dish of lentil salad with grilled salmon served at the Hay Adams Hotel in D.C. The other thing lentil salad was made for is cantalope. Schlurp.

So this is what the Satellite Coffee Shop up on Louisiana is serving. I forget what they call it. It’s on a ciabatta:

Smashed garbanzos,
tapenade,
artichoke hearts,
mozz,
pesto
and red bell pepper.

It’s taking me a while to get it together. I am making the delicious Bangladeshi dahl from the Coriander Club Cookbook of Spitalfields City Farm. Part of the pleasure is shopping for bargain spices at the Vitamin Cottage, where I got two or three pounds of turmeric for like 75 cents. If you need any, let me know. I have repackaged in it in clean old olive bottles and I have plenty for you. Ditto ground coriander which, along with yellow lentils from the Asian grocery (another four pounds for 75 cents), plus some soaked chickpeas which can only be cooked in under three days at this altitude in a pressure cooker will be cooked together with a bucket of onion and garlic, and finished with more of same, plus Paspiron. Which I don’t have yet, and which I should get. It’s a five seed combo. Wiki calls it panch poron.

Panch poron or paspiron: fenugreek seed, nigella seed, cumin seed, black mustard seed and fennel seed in equal parts.

Dahl may not be precisely Mediterranean, but it is one of the sublime creations of beans which add to our health. The Bengali ladies call for jalapenos, which I omit. This dahl will be my healthy lunch meat for the week.

For the tapenade, I’m using a can of Trader Joe green olives and white figs for this recipe. It’s delicious — stinky and unctuous, like you want it to be — with canned black olives and I’ma see how it goes with sourer green ones.

Pesto I got in a plastic thing at Trader Joe (which has all kinds of cute stuff but no actual dried beans, which is annoying) along with frozen artichoke hearts I will be cooking and marinating in lemon/garlic vinaigrette.

Eliminating the mozz. Looking forward to leftover dahl with leftover cold garlicky pork, and one of those broccoli slaw bag salads I am doting upon these days. Also part of the greens ‘n’ beans regime, my darling Sam Giancana’s last supper, which while it wasn’t so good for Sam’s health, is the all time winner in the beans ‘n’ greens category. Using bulk Italian sausage from Keller’s Farm Store. Kiss me, Guido.

Advertisements