Sometimes on Sunday we don't have company and we aren't goin' off somewhere and it's just CD (husband) and me and I don't feel like cookin' much, so I don't. I'm just in the mood to fix somethin' that will give us leftovers so we can eat it twice that day. And since this is a really good and easy sandwich that CD likes and will eat for two meals in the same day, it's a winner for me. Serve it with chips and a pickle for the noon meal and a bowl of soup for supper.
We'll make the Olive Salad first. You can use this salad in several ways. Put it on any sandwich to spruce it up. Add it to a lettuce salad to make the flavors of the salad pop! Or my favorite, thin toast points.
All the ingredients in this Olive Salad are good for you foods.
You will need:
10 ounce jar Green Olives, with pimento
3 ounces black olives
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 tablespoon chopped capers
1/3 cup chopped red onion
1 stalk celery, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon dried basil, or 1 tablespoon fresh, chopped
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, or 2 teaspoons fresh, chopped
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
Drain the green olives and reserve 2 tablespoons of the brine. Coarsely chop 'em olives.
Add the garlic, capers, red onion and celery, and mix 'em well.
Let me tell you, if you have never used capers, nows the time to try them. They are so good in so many ways. They remind me of green olives, they are packed in a salty brine but they have a little bit of a pungent flavor. They spruce up a dish. You can find 'em in most grocery stores and they come packed in jars.
The type I have on hand today are small capers but you can get large ones too.
Here's all your ingredients so far in the bowl. Ain't they pretty?
Make a dressing by combinin' 2 tablespoons of the green olive brine with the remainin' ingredients. Whisk to combine, then pour over the salad and stir 'em well.
Now for the sandwich I'm makin' today I am goin' to use cream cheese but you can also use cheddar cheese.
1 large loaf French bread
8 ounces cream cheese, softened or 8 ounces of cheddar cheese
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, if using cheddar cheese, omit butter and instead use about 1
cup mayonnaise, real mayo not Miracle Whip.
4 tomatoes, sliced thinly (I used large Roma tomatoes)
1/2 pound bacon, crisply cooked
1 large onion,sliced thin and sauteed till caramelized
Sliced black olives, about 2 ounces (and yes I know the Olive Salad has black olives in
it but black olives are good for you and you'll be glad you put the extra ones in
Take your loaf of French bread and slice it in half lengthwise.
Now I always use Neufchatel cream cheese, it has 1/3 less fat than regular cream
cheese, and I always use 2% sharp cheddar cheese. You may think I'm loopy worrin' 'bout a little fat when I'll turn around and put a whole stick of butter on there but it's because I cut the fat when I can that I don't worry about usin' real butter.
Spread the cream cheese mixture on top and bottom halves of the bread and sprinkle with garlic powder on both halves.
Now saute your onions till they are good and carmelly. (Is that a word? I'm sill needn' that list of acceptable words you can say on the blog waves) You can do this in the same skillet that you cooked you bacon in, just drain the bacon grease and add 2 tablespoons canola oil to skillet and add onions and a sprinkle of salt.
Layer the sliced tomatoes on the bottom half of the bread.
Then layer the bacon.
And finally layer with the onions and sliced olives.
Put it on a cookie sheet and bake 25 minutes at 325 degrees till cheese and butter are good and melted. Do the same if you are usin' sharp cheddar and mayo.
Slice sandwich crosswise in 6 to 8 servin's. Serve 'em warm.
Put a tablespoon or two of olive salad on each sandwich slice as you serve 'em and be sure to pass around extra napkins so they don't have to use their shirt tails.
G -o -l- l -y, this sure is good vittles. Let me know how you liked 'em.