From the Archives: June Sandwich of the Month - Hero Sandwich! - Published June 9, 2015

When we were growing up, our mom always encouraged us to be creative - we had tons of cookbooks to page through - and somewhere along the way, she picked up a large hard-cover kids' cookbook.  The A-To-Z No-Cook Cookbook by Felipe Rojas-Lombardi (illustrated by Dorothy Ivens) was our answer to making exotic and fun food.  Exotic, you ask?  Well, let's just say we never got around to making the steak tartare (raw ground beef)!  There were also some pretty awesome recipes involving ice cream and cereal - a kid's dream cookbook, I must say!

There are a few different sandwiches in this book, and I always wanted to make the hero sandwich.  Just pop over to the "H" section, and you will see the sandwich that inspired my own creation for this month.  (For the record, I modified my sandwich recipe a little, to keep with the times.)  This delicious hero starts with the bread - this kind of bread needs to be a crusty baguette or Italian style loaf - one that has some sustenance, so it can stand up to the vinaigrette. It should also be relatively small in size.  And crusty.  Really, really crusty.  I ended up buying a demi-baguette from our local fancy grocery store.  The deli meats are to your taste, but I used deli chicken breast and black forest ham.  Choose whatever suits you!  For the cheese - again, whatever suits your taste.  I used Provolone because this kind of sandwich just calls for that salty, creamy goodness. 

I just have to comment on the book's illustrator, Dorothy Ivens.  I don't know much about her, but after a quick search on the interwebs, I discovered she was also a cookbook author in her own right.  She wrote and illustrated a few cookbooks, which I found on Ebay, so now I have my own collection of Dorothy Ivens books!  Her unique style of drawing and haphazardly filling in with color made the cookbook a lot of fun to read. 

Anyway, I hope you try this recipe out on your next picnic or al fresco lunch. Oh, by the way, the sandwich fabric shown in the picture below is available at the shop!

Hero Sandwich

Small loaf of crusty French or Italian bread
2 - 4 stuffed green olives (I used white Cheddar-stuffed olives)
1 lettuce leaf
1 - 2 slices Provolone (or whatever cheese you would like)
3 slices deli Black Forest ham
3 slices deli chicken breast
Roma tomato, sliced
1 tsp. red wine vinegar (or whatever vinegar you would like)
1 tsp. olive oil
Pinch each of salt, pepper, and dried oregano

Slice the bread in half lengthwise.  Pull out the soft interior of the bread and either nosh on it while you're making your sandwich or throw it out.  Finely mince the green olives.

In a small bowl, combine vinegar, oil, salt, pepper, and oregano.  Wash and dry your lettuce leaf and tear into large pieces.  Add lettuce pieces to the vinaigrette in the bowl and toss to coat completely. 

On the bottom piece of bread, sprinkle minced olives, then layer tomato, ham, chicken, cheese, and lettuce, topping the whole shebang with the bread lid.

So there you go!  Doesn't this look like the sandwiches on the fabric background? Now go ahead and enjoy this delicious sandwich with the hero in your life!

- Kris