National Sandwich Week with the Central Co-Operative

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Having previously managed the payroll for a very large food manufacture of about 100,000 sandwiches a day many years ago, the invitation from the Central England Co-Operative to create a great sandwich combination using tasty ingredients that could be found in your local store to celebrate National Sandwich week was was right up my street!

As the weather has been very changeable recently, including snow, hailstones, ice, wind and sunshine (and all in one day too!) I decided on a combination of a hot, toasted, sandwich and a lovely salad to go with it. I bought a variety of ingredients including a pack of sandwich thins, Mozzarella cheese, tomato pesto, mixed salad leaves, beautifully sweet Piccolo tomatoes, sweet baby peppers and some delicious mixed root vegetable crips to make my lunch.

British Sandwich Week 2016 with the Central England Co-Operative
After preparing a really quick salad using the leaves, peppers and tomatoes, I simply tipped some of the root vegetable crisps into a small bowl and set about preparing my toasted sandwich.

Drain the Mozzarella and slice about 5mm thick.

British Sandwich Week 2016 with the Central England Co-Operative
The Sandwich Thins are pre-sliced so it’s very quick and simple to separate the two halves.  Place a couple of generous teaspoons of the tomato pesto on one side of the bread.

British Sandwich Week 2016 with the Central England Co-Operative
Spread the pesto over the bread into a relatively even layer.  Repeat with the other sandwiches as required.  I made two for lunch today; one each for my husband and myself.

British Sandwich Week 2016 with the Central England Co-Operative
Tear the mozzarella slices into strips and cover the pesto.  I’ve left a small gap around the edges to stop the cheese oozing out (and being wasted) on to my sandwich press. Top with the other half of the Sandwich thin.

British Sandwich Week 2016 with the Central England Co-Operative
Preheat your sandwich maker (I have an Antony Worrall Thompson for Breville flat sandwich press that I’ve had for many years).

British Sandwich Week 2016 with the Central England Co-Operative
Place your sandwich onto the sandwich maker and close the lid.

British Sandwich Week 2016 with the Central England Co-Operative
Toast for a few minutes until the top is nicely browned and the mozzarella has started to melt.

British Sandwich Week 2016 with the Central England Co-Operative
Slice diagonally using a sharp knife.

British Sandwich Week 2016 with the Central England Co-Operative
Serve with a helping of salad and some of the root vegetable crisps.

British Sandwich Week 2016 with the Central England Co-Operative
Tasty (the sandwich that is!)

British Sandwich Week 2016 with the Central England Co-Operative

I was sent a voucher from the Central England Co-Operative to buy my ingredients to participate in the creation for National Sandwich Week.

Tomato Sauce Pizza Tipping

It’s incredibly easy to make your own tomato sauce pizza topping and then, using any leftover, stir it into your pasta or spruce it up with mince to made a base for your bolognese sauce to go with your spaghetti.  This is how easy it is:

45ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 large Onion, finely chopped
2 cloves Garlic, crushed
1.25ml (¼tsp) Chilli flakes
2 x400g tins of chopped Tomatoes
2.5ml (½tsp) Sugar
Splash red wine (if you wouldn’t drink it, don’t cook with it!)
Basil stalks, chopped

1. In a large saucepan, heat your oil and cook your onions for 10 minutes until transparent and soft.
2. Add the crushed garlic and cook for 3-5 minutes until cooked, but not brown.
3. Add the chilli flakes, chopped tomatoes, sugar and wine.
4. Bring to the boil, reduce to a simmer then taste and season as required.
5. Add the basil stalks.
6. Cover and simmer for 1 hour until thick.
7. Blitz until smooth.

*Use to top your pizza dough, or transfer into a clean Kilner jar and refrigerate for up to 3 days.
*To make your bolognese sauce, brown mince, and onion and garlic then stir through the sauce and heat until piping hot.

Pannini with mozzarella & pesto

Pannini with mozzarella & pesto
Another quick lunch recipe from me today:  Pannini with Sun-dried tomato pesto, tomato and Mozzarella.  Quick, easy and oh, so tasty!
 
Simply take:
 
1 pannini per person and slice horizontally
Spread generously with some Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto (my fave is by Sacla)
Top with slices of fresh tomato
Add a couple of slices of Mozzarella cheese
 
 
 

I make mine in my sandwich press (one with flat plates) for a few minutes until golden and the cheese has melted.

You’ll find that the mozzarella cheese goes a little bit chewy, so be careful when you bite into it.

Enjoy!  x