One of my most vivid memories of college in upstate New York had nothing to do with college or upstate New York. One brutal winter morning, when all I dared dream about was hot chocolate from the library vending machine, a friend from San Diego mentioned missing his family’s avocado orchard.
He may as well have told me he was from Mars.
From that moment on, California became a very real place in this midwesterner’s fantasy life. It was CandyLand, where all your favorite goodies hang from trees, everywhere in easy reach, year-round. How could life not be wonderful in a place where crocodile-skinned avocados and bright lemons grow heavy in your own backyard?
I think of that cold weather revelation several times a week- while standing in my California kitchen and spooning avocado on toast. I like my avocado smushed with a squirt of lemon, sea salt, pepper, red pepper flakes and, yes, a drizzle of olive oil. I know that’s fat on fat, but give it a go and see if you agree that a little liquid gold makes all the difference.
Avocado toast has been popping up everywhere on the blogosphere these days. I don’t think it’s a comeback or a fad. If lunchtime at my house is any indication, avocado toast never faded away. Maybe we thought it was too basic to share? I’m sorry, pretty green lady. Shouldn’t have stuck you in that corner.
All this avocado toast got me thinking. What other seemingly banal vegetable sandwiches do you love? Here are my favs:
-GOOD cheddar, avocado and sprouts piled high on thickly-sliced multigrain with Dijon
-Herbed cream cheese with avocado, Persian cucumber, radish, fennel and red onion on toasted cranberry loaf or olive bread.
-(Non-traditional) Vegetable Banh Mi. Hard-boiled egg, pickled carrots and daikon, radishes, cucumbers, fresh jalapeno, watercress and fresh mint on a warm baguette slathered in soft butter- salt with sea salt!- and served with sriracha. Sriracha mayo is the real way to go, but I don’t go mayo. Ever.
What’s your favorite vegetable sandwich? Let’s discover new loves this Meatless Monday. There may be a revelation in store.