Summertime Tomato Sandwiches

Tomato sandwiches are a Southern summertime tradition. It seems that everyone from most everywhere has their own story to tell about, and recipe for, tomato sandwiches. There are as many variations as their are varieties of tomatoes.

The tomato is the iconic vegetable--er, fruit--that showcases just how what a difference it makes when produce is picked and eaten in season. There's simply no substitute (and certainly no comparison!) for eating tomatoes at their peak time of year. And as long as there are summer tomatoes ripening on the vine, you can bet there will continue to be this delicious ritual. We welcome the season with mouths watering, waiting for that perfect, round ripeness.

Should you be lucky enough to find yourself, once you've had your fill of the sandwiches, with a good quantity of leftover tomatoes, you can try your hand at "putting them up." The making of passata, or pasta sauce, or simply canning the tomatoes whole is a long and beautiful tradition that has slowly faded from our culture; thankfully, it promises to return.

I like to grow large heirloom tomatoes, but this year most of the plants we put into the garden ended up being of the smaller varieties. A good excuse to go to the market and sample some larger varieties from my favorite farms.

There are a thousand variations on this sandwich, but this version is one of my favorites.

2 large heirloom tomatoes
Several slices of ripe avocado
1/4 cup mayonnaise with 2 Tablespoons basil pesto
A handful of fresh arugula leaves
Sea salt
4 slices of the freshest bread possible {I like pan di mie, whole wheat pita, ciabatta, rosemary focaccia}

Serves two.

Buon appetito!
copyright 2009 Alisa Barry


Frank said...

Sounds wonderful! The simple things are the best, aren't they?

Alisa Barry said...

Yes, always!