When chicken salad comes to mind, I always think of a mayonnaise-bound concoction (not that I don’t enjoy that). But this chicken salad recipe, from Alison Lewis’s new book 400 Best Sandwich Recipes (Robert Rose) updates an old favorite with a fresh, bright-flavored, colorful spin. There’s no added salt in this recipe, because the feta and Kalamata olives add plenty of salty kick. If you don’t want to buy a whole jar of olives, look for Kalamatas that you can purchase by the pound at the supermarket salad bar, olive bar or deli case. Lewis recommends using leftover grilled chicken or rotisserie chicken. Or, to change it up, sub chopped, cooked shrimp for the poultry. Use whole wheat pita bread, if you can find it.
This is inspired by my favorite vegetarian sandwich at Chez Lulu, a cafe and bakery in Birmingham, Alabama. I love the combo of thinly sliced sweet pear with pungent goat cheese, lightly dressed greens and toasted nuts. I used a plain version of our Knead-less Olive-Rosemary Bread, but any type of whole grain bread will do the trick.
I had a fantastic sandwich from Cowgirl Creamery while in Point Reyes, CA, this weekend that reignited my love of sandwiches … in particular, topless ones called “tartines.” I made this one with leftover Red Hawk from my visit, along with luscious figs picked up en route. Drizzling the fig with honey and popping it under the broiler gives it an impromptu jammy quality; especially good paired with gooey cheese and crisp prosciutto.
A po’ boy is a New Orleans sandwich traditionally made with deep-fried oysters (another sustainable seafood pick) or shrimp. In N’awlins’ lingo, these po’ boys are served “dressed” with lettuce, tomato and seasoned mayo. Look for U.S. farmed tilapia, as the most sustainable choice; otherwise, substitute domestically raised catfish.
Everything about this sandwich makes me happy. The radishes–so vibrant and colorful–come straight from our back yard, the bread from our local bakery, and the goat cheese from grazing goats just a few miles away. Even the olive oil comes from a local producer. The radish offers a peppery hit that’s lovely against the creamy, pungent cheese.