August is National Sandwich Month!


….and (dammit!)…’s almost over!

The sandwich could very well be my favorite food category.   Now, I love the taste of steak.   I’m captivated by the richness and texture of crab legs or lobster.  Blueberry pie gives me chills.  Salads are so tasty and so good for you.

But nothing hits all the right notes quite like the versatile sandwich.   You start with bread, which simply reminds one of home.  Add a meat or a fish element – some kind of base ingredient.   Add a texture component, like shredded lettuces or crisp veggies or Durkee Fried Onions or potato chips.  Then add a last flavor booster or a signature sauce, and there you have it.  The perfect food.

I’ve gone wild and created some nicely imaginative sandwich recipes and I’ve also concocted some pretty trippy combinations that didn’t quite hit the mark.  How about Peanut Butter and Garlic Aioli and Pickle and Onion on a croissant?  #nuclearbreath.    Or naam loaded with albacore tuna, cucumber, feta, sprouts, peeled carrot, creamy dill yogurt and a big shot blast of balsamic vinegar?   This summer, I went full-bore avocado-crazy, putting it in everything I can think of (God, I love that little green orb so much!).

For those of you who add mayonnaise – just a few million of you out there – you should make your own at home.  I’ve got the perfect recipe from a legendary Minneapolis restaurant…Charlie’s Café Exceptionale.   The venerated restaurant closed in 1982 after nearly 50 years in operation, but a fair number of its dishes survive.  Believe it or not, this mayonnaise was a major component in Charlie’s incredible potato salad.  That’s right, I said potato salad and Charlie’s Potato Salad recipe is to die for.  But don’t kick the bucket yet.  Make this mayo for yourself.  I’ll share the rest of the potato salad recipe later.

Here’s the recipe – follow every ingredient exactly.

1 pasteurized egg (to pasteurize, put a large egg in 140 degree water for 3 minutes.  That’s all.  It takes a much higher temperature to cook the actual yolk)

1 tsp dry mustard (not wet – no French’s)

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar

1/8 tsp cayenee pepper

2 tbls lemon juice (NOTE!  Do NOT use two tablespoons.  Use ONE only.  This is an amendment to my subsequent posts.  Two tablespoons renders you with a runny mess, not thick and luxurious and spreadable.) 

1 cup vegetable oil (not olive oil, not canola oil….vegetable oil only)

Mix it in a blender.  Put in all the ingredients, except 1 of the tablespoons of lemon juice and the oil.   Blend on medium, then drizzle the vegetable oil slowwwwly until the mayo thickens, then add the last tablespoon of lemon juice.  This makes about 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 cups of mayo and thanks to pasteurizing the egg, should keep in the fridge for a month or more.   Believe me, this stuff tastes sooooooo much better than Miracle Whip or Hellman’s and is super easy to make.

Now go make mayonnaise!     -Dirty Jack


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