One of the Best Sandwiches I’ve Ever Tasted.
You know how it goes. You get a taste for something. Then you think about it and you start wondering what it would taste like if you added a little of this spice, or some of those seeds, or how about some of that new spice you got for Christmas. Yeah, that’s what happened here.
It was Maureen Abood’s Lebanese Talami bread that first popped into my head. I really love this bread. It puffs up beautifully in the oven and you end up with a huge soft loaf of light and airy bread with a big wide open crumb. But this time I added ground black lime *, nigella seeds *, and dried fenugreek leaves *. I’ve cooked with the seeds of fenugreek, but never the dried leaves. They have an almost celery-like flavor, but then a hit of sweetness hits you on the back end.
I thought the combination of black lime, nigella seeds and fenugreek leaves would give me an interesting flavor profile for the bread and couldn’t wait to taste it. I baked it in a quarter sheet pan and spread some softened butter on the crust when it came out of the oven.
The more I thought about this bread, the more I became convinced it would make a great sandwich. Now, if you’re not in the mood to make the bread, you can use a purchased focaccia or ciabatta, but I hope you make the bread because it’s outstanding and is nothing like anything you can buy. Plus, it’s super easy if you have a stand mixer.
I had some Benton’s bacon stashed in my freezer and pulled it out to add to the sandwiches. While it was cooking I mashed a couple avocados with a little lime juice, salt, and pepper. I then sliced the peel off an orange and cut the remaining orange into thin slices. Earlier, I had sliced an onion and a chili pepper, added it to a bowl with cider vinegar, salt, and sugar, and chilled it.
Now, it was time to build my sandwiches. I spread the mashed avocado on the bottom of the bread, topped it with strips of bacon, slices of orange, and then some pickled onions and a few chilies.
While this wasn’t what I envisioned when I had first started thinking about the Talami bread, all I can say is – Wow. Those additions to the bread are outstanding. The black lime is very well balanced with the earthiness of the nigella seeds and fenugreek leaves. The bread is full of flavor and couldn’t have been a better choice for the sandwiches. Let’s be honest, you can never go wrong with bacon. That’s a given. But the creamy avocado, the pickled funkiness of the onions and chilies, and then the bright punch of the sweet citrus made for one of the best sandwiches I’ve ever tasted. So damned delicious.