Wednesday, 12 June 2013


Do you ever dream about food? Im talking about food you ate more than a decade ago? Maybe its just me.

 Recently, I had a dream about a sandwich that we used to buy in Louisiana at Quiznos (which for some reason that was no doubt hilarious at the time we used to call Kinkos) before our eyes were opened to compassionate eating.
 It consisted of the following:

 Parmesan rosemary bread

Melted mozzarella and cheddar cheese

Thinly sliced angus beef

Caramelised onion and mushrooms

Honey bourbon mustard

Grille sauce which was, as I recall like a cross between BBQ and teriyaki

It was amazing. But my favourite bits by far were the caramelised onions and mushrooms in that boozy, sticky sauce. In 2002 when I because a vegetarian we went back and after some wrangling with the young confused  cashier I managed to get the sandwich without the meat--just the cheese, onions and mushrooms and sauce and it was *just* as good.

These days our eyes are completely open and we dont consume meat or cheese or honey. Sadly, my digestive track doesnt fancy wheat either so I was a bit stuck for ideas to recreate it. Until I found this at Sainsbury.

It was boozy from the Jack Daniels,  sticky sweet with orange juice and raisin puree and tangy from tamarind paste--plus it was labelled suitable for vegans and celiacs! I knew what I had to do.

 I make caramelised onion and mushroom all the time so that was no problem. Letting them simmer in the BBQ sauce after they had turned all lovely and golden brown would be a piece of cake.

I make an excellent cheese sauce that has the sharpness of cheddar made from cashews and nutritional yeast and mustard. That sorted the melted cheese bit.

I decided to forgo the beef bit--but maybe the next time I get some tempeh Ill try it. But as I recalled from all those years ago--it was just as good without the meat.


Now the bread might be an issue. I found a couple recipes on line for gluten free garlic rosemary yeast bread and thought Id try one. Well, lets just say the attempt was a bit like eating the sole of your shoe. Being gluten free it flattened down and was hard as rock--it is difficult to get gluten free bread to rise and it spreads as it bakes unless you have something to keep it in the right shape. I put the bread out for the birds and tried again with my tried and true recipe for buns that uses soya yoghurt and baking powder that gives them a nice sourdough flavour. I added garlic and rosemary and some nutritional yeast for that cheesy flavour. I baked them in Yorkshire pudding tins so they keep their shape. I had wanted long, slipper shaped bread to match the original, but hey ho. My little round buns will do nicely, thank you very much.


 Since I had also made a batch of bean and buckwheat smoky bacon strips recently I decided to fry up a few to put on the sandwich. Heres the recipe in case you were wondering.


So here's the finished concoction.

I served it with oven chips.


It was really tasty--maybe not exactly like the one at Quiznos --but hey, its been more than 10 years since Ive had one, so who knows. It had all the flavours I was looking for--pungent (rosemary), boozy, sweet and tangy (JD BBQ sauce) sharp and creamy (cashew cheese), smoky (bean and buckwheat bacon). It was also *extremely* messy. Not the sort to eat in front of company, if ya know what I mean.

Spiderman and I have both found we dont really miss eating animals because often those bits were fairly flavourless and it was sauces and marinades that made them taste great. Why not just eat the sauces and marinades and save lives--an animals life and your own. Eating animals and their high fat secretions have been shown time and again to contribute to diseases like obesity,  heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and some cancers--just to name a few. If you dont believe me--read The China Study.

I had lots of fun recreating this sammich from memory. Bon appetit!