Thursday, October 31

Pepper Turkey, Bacon Apple, Grilled Cheese Sandwiches: Fall in a Sandwich

It would be safe to say that my favorite sandwiches are always the ones with either bacon or cheese or both. So when I came across this sandwich with both bacon, cheese with a green crisp apple I knew I wanted it. To me apples are one of signs that fall has arrived. Apple pie = fall, apple desserts = fall, apple picking = fall. It makes sense to me.

Now there is a whole food idea with combining cheese + apples together. This is not a new trend. Some people will go as far as adding cheddar to their apple pie. This baffles me even growing up in the state that's known for apples. Yet after tasting fresh apple in this oozy, gooey cheesy sandwich I think I have a glimmer of what they are talking about.

Does apples really go in a sandwich though? I would yes but not without reservations. For example when my son bit into his lovely sandwich, even though the apple was thinly sliced, the entire apple slice fell out. Things had trouble staying within the bread. The fall flavors tasted so good together so I wouldn't delete the apple despite the logistics of eating falling food. Next time I will try grating the apple onto the sandwich, so every bite can have a bit of apple.  Second the massive ingredient list.... turkey, cheese, apple, bacon - that's a lot of ingredients. Won't it fall apart. Nope. I used a very steady strong sourdough bread. By grilling it or making a grilled cheese the bread toasted and was very useful in holding it together.

There are so many apples but I think granny smith is the right one for this job because effectively breaks up the richness of the bacon and cheese with it's tart fresh taste. Even if you don't like sour things this will be perfectly refreshing. To offset any overwhelming sourness I slipped in a few sweet slices of pear. If you didn't know it was in there you would think it was just another part of the apple. It just adds another depth of flavor.

Trade in the classic grilled cheese for this little fall cousin for lunch or dinner. For my family this was a very nice easy filling dinner served up with some salad, chips, and the remaining pear and apple slices. The original recipe, from a Martha Stewart Living Magazine (Jan 2013) still sounds good. I might have to try it. Or just make another one my way with the peppery turkey, sour apple, bit of sweet pear melted cheese cooked in the bacon drippings as it might be better.

To make two Sandwiches you'll need: 

2- 4 pieces of sourdough bread (depending on the size of loaf)
4 slices of deli pepper turkey
3 slices of pepper bacon
1 green granny smith apple, cut into very thin slices
1 pear (not a typo) cut into very thin slices
4 slices of cheddar, mild (sharp would taste good too), cut into halves

1. Fry up 4 strips of bacon in a large skillet, saving the drippings

2. Once the bacon is cooked to a crisp, pat the bacon down with a paper towel. Remove about half of the drippings form the skillet and turn the heat to low. 

3. Build your sandwiches in this order: bread, half slice of cheese, 1 1/2 slices of bacon, half slice of cheese, 2 slices of pepper turkey, half of slice of cheese, 3 thin slices of pear, 3 thin slices of apple, half of slice of cheese. By cutting the cheese pieces into halves I found that despite the many ingredients when they melted it was easier for the sandwich to hold the layers together than if the cheese was in larger pieces confined to the outer edges of the sandwiches.

4. Put your fall time sandwiches in the same skillet or on a grill the bacon was cooked in.... cook them until the outside is golden brown and the cheese is melted. Approx 5-10 minutes depending the temperature. To insure my grilled cheese melted all the way through I cooked mine with a heavy salad plate and a can of fruit pressing down on the top, flattening the sandwich like an sandwich/panini press.

Serve with salad, fruit, or chips for an easy lunch or dinner

Enjoy fall!
From my kitchen to yours

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