I decided to spend my lunch time making a sandwich; and being one of those obsessive New Media types, I decided to blog about it.
The basic sandwich is the Emperor Rupert, an item of my own design: deli sliced turkey, Monterey Jack cheese, lettuce, and chipotle mayonnaise on seeded rye. This would have been made with a sandwich press, except the thing that I thought was one of those was actually a pizzelle cookie maker, so improvsation was the name of the game.
Let’s start with ingredients:
As you can see, I am not really foodie-ing it, here: this is all stuff that comes from the supermarket. I’m not saying that you can’t make this sandwich with the artisan bells and whistles and whatnot; I’m just saying that the sandwich will also taste fine without it. Also: I’m from New Jersey, so I follow the rule Kosher is correct on general principles when it comes to ingredients.
If you don’t have a sandwich press, this is when you get your cast iron frying pan and heat that sucker up on medium.
That’s butter. That’s what you cook sandwiches in. Unless you like the taste of something else. But, for the love of God… butter.
Moving on… the mayonnaise.
I am an absolute wimp when it comes to spicy food. I will not pretend otherwise. So, I took the store-bought chipotle mayo and added sour cream, regular mayo, and lime juice to it until it came out way that I like. If you think that this is too tame for you, go right ahead and use the stuff straight (or mix your own) – but I still recommend at least a little lime juice.
Assembling the sandwich is straightforward:
Note, by the way, that there is no real reason why you cannot eat the sandwich at this point. It’s a turkey on rye with lettuce, mayo, and cheese; perfectly edible. But since the frying pan should be hot by now…
Behold: the Spirit and Mind of Man, overcoming the obstacles of the Universe – in this case, the lack of a sandwich press. If that isn’t enough, add more bowls.
I would recommend three minutes on a side, and then another minute and a half to be safe. Sandwich press… I don’t know, sorry. I decided that the sandwich was done when it looked like this:
And here is is on a plate.
The Emperor Reuben is not as gloppy as, say, a Reuben, but it can be a messy sandwich: the lettuce will threaten to escape during cooking and Monterey Jack is a runny kind of cheese. The sandwich itself is tasty: the heat from the chipotle mayo sneaks up on you, and is definitely stronger in the parts of the sandwich that don’t have lettuce.
Moving onto the variant… the Emperor Rupert: Muerte a Castro is a variant inspired by Bert Huggins on Twitter: it consists of deli sliced turkey, Monterey Jack cheese, dill pickle spears, and chipotle mayonnaise on ciabatta roll. The assemblage is a little different:
Turkey/a little more cheese
And folded together
Cook about 8 minutes, four on each side, and you are done.
My wife ate this one, after I had a bite to check: it’s definitely tasty as well, with a sharper flavor because of the pickle. My wife noted that there was a bit more mayo in this particular sandwich than she expected; she also ate it, so it’s not an insurmountable problem.
The next step will be to make one of these incorporating bacon. Constant reader BigGator5 argues for Baconnaise; we will see, we will see. These are somewhat heavy sandwiches, what with the soft cheese and mayo and cooked in butter and whatnot.
If you make one: enjoy!