Saturday, April 5, 2014

Dinner at the Improv- California Roast Beef

I like to improvise sometimes, which means I just throw things into the pan and wing it. Every once in a while, it is horrible, more often though, it turns out pretty darned well. I wanted to share these improvisations to inspire other cooks who feel comfortable cooking by taste.

I think that recipes for cold sandwiches are kind of silly, but alas, I have a whole bunch of sandwiches to share. Thankfully we have "Dinner at the Improv" which makes sandwich sharing so much easier. Instead of a step by step process with pictures to insult your intelligence, I'll give you my sandwich concoctions with general measurements and trust you to make it to your liking.

For episode three of Dinner at the Improv, we're having- California Roast Beef Sandwiches and Wraps. 

If you'll remember, I don't eat bread because of a yeast intolerance, but I can eat wraps until the cows come home, so most of my sandwiches will be prepared both ways.

Now, this specific sandwich comes from my childhood when I grew up in California and there was a food court restaurant called A.T.C.'s , which stood for avocado, tomato, and cucumber, and it had quintessential California ingredients in all kinds of sandwiches. One of our favorites to get was this: rare roast beef, cream cheese, avocado and the piece de resistance, alfalfa sprouts. Really, the sprouts are what make this sandwich special. They have an earthy crunch that is as perfect as potato chips on sandwiches.

To make a California Roast Beef Sandwich (or Wrap) you'll need:
Chewy roll or bread - like sour dough or challah (or a wrap/tortilla)
Cream cheese (about an ounce per sandwich, softened)
Rare roast beef, thinly sliced (about 1/4 lb per sandwich)
Ripe avocado, thinly sliced, (2-3 slices per sandwich)
Alfalfa sprouts (a large pinch, mine ends up being about 1/4 cup, but I realllllly like sprouts)

I start with toasting the bread and softening the wrap, which I do by microwaving refrigerated tortillas, covered with damp paper towels, for about 25 seconds.

Then, I soften my cream cheese in the microwave, about 30 seconds (I made 5 sandwiches so used 5 oz from the 8 oz bar). Once it is soft, the cream cheese goes on the bottom of the roll/wrap. Then on top of that goes the roast beef, then the sprouts, then the avocado. You can change the order if you like, I just find that this order gets the best taste combination per bite.

Then, close your sandwich, or roll up your wrap, flipping up the bottom, then bringing in the sides, to make it look like the wrap in the picture...

And then you are ready to eat. It is that simple, because sandwiches are pretty stinkin' easy... but they certainly don't have to be boring. 

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