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Jul 4, 2018 11:19 AMPublication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press

Make 'Knife And Fork' Open-Faced Sandwiches In The Hot Weather

American knife and fork BLT. JANEEN SARLIN
Jul 9, 2018 9:55 AM

The perfect antidote to hot weather cooking for dinner is “knife and fork” open-faced sandwiches.

These three recipes are uncomplicated, beautiful, and easy to assemble—perfect for a weeknight dinner or a spontaneous Sunday supper after a weekend of rigorous sports.

Pairing protein with farm fresh vegetables and fruits on toasted hearty whole-grain bread is in keeping with a healthy lifestyle. The addition of serrano pepper, spicy arugula or watercress, or a surprise combo of cheese and meat, gives each sandwich a unique character. Pour a glass of chilled wine or herbal iced tea with the open-faced sandwich and offer a selection of cheeses and fresh fruit for dessert!

It’s the best summer supper sampler I can imagine for such a time as this! Bon appétit!

American Knife And Fork BLT(Serves 4)6 slices peppered bacon, cut crosswise into thirds

About 1 pound multicolored heirloom tomatoes, cut into thick slices

2 and 1/2 cups baby arugula, washed

1 cup flat leaf parsley leaves

1/2 cup basil leaves, torn

About 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 to 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons mayonnaise

4 thick multigrain sourdough bread slices, toastedTo prepare:In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add bacon and cook, turning occasionally until all the fat is rendered and the bacon is brown and crisp, about eight minutes. Drain on paper towels and reserve.

In a large bowl, toss the arugula, parsley and basil leaves together. Add tomatoes and drizzle olive oil and vinegar over the greens and gently toss to blend. Add pepper, taste, and adjust the seasonings.To assemble and serve: Arrange toast on a cutting board.

Spread about 1 tablespoon of mayonnaise on each slice of toast.

Scatter the arugula/herb mixture evenly on the bread, top with tomato slices, tuck a parsley leaf on the tomato and top with bacon.

Cut each slice of bread in half and transfer to dinner plates.

Serve with a knife and fork. Pour a chilled rose.Steak Au Poivre 
On Baguette(Serves 4)For the peppercorn mix: 1 tablespoon black peppercorns (combination of Tellicherry and Lampong)

1/2 teaspoon white peppercorns

1/2 teaspoon freeze dried green peppercorns

1/2 teaspoon Basis Roses (red peppercorns)

2 juniper berries

1 whole allspice

(Or use mixed peppercorns found in the spice section of the grocery store)For the steak and baguette:4, 4-ounce (3/4- to 1-inch thick) filet mignon steaks, trimmed

Kosher salt for searing

2 tablespoon unsalted butter

4 shallots, thinly sliced

About 2 tablespoons Madeira or Cognac

1/3 cup beef stock or demi glace

2 firm ripe tomatoes, sliced thin

1 cup Mache lettuce

1 cup watercress leaves

1 or 2 French baguettes, one halved and sliced horizontally (for toast)Optional:About 1/2 cup crumbled Roquefort cheese for garnishTo prepare:For peppercorn mixture: In a spice grinder, add black, white, green, red peppercorns, allspice, and juniper berries and grind until coarsely ground. Transfer to small bowl and reserve.

Rub two pinches of the peppercorn mixture into both sides of each piece of filet mignon and bring to room temperature.

Meanwhile, mix watercress leaves with Mache, slice tomatoes, toast the baguette, crumble the cheese, and reserve until assembly.

In a heavy skillet over high heat, sprinkle kosher salt on the bottom of the skillet, when a drop of water sizzles, the pan is hot. Holding one filet with a metal tong at a time, sear all the edges until browned, then place one side of the meat down in the pan and sear until a brown crust forms, about two minutes, turn and sear the other side until browned, for about a total of four minutes for rare. For medium, cook about six to seven minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest.

With paper towels, wipe salt out of the skillet. In the same skillet over medium heat, add butter and shallots and cook until soft but not browned, about five minutes. Add Madeira and ignite. When the flames die out, add stock and cook until the sauce is reduced by half, about four minutes. Taste and adjust the seasonings.To assemble: Place the toasted baguette on individual dinner plates, scatter greens on the toast, top with tomato slices, and a pinch of flaked salt.

Cut steak into thin slices; arrange them on the tomatoes and spoon shallot sauce over the meat. Scatter with greens and garnish with crumbled Roquefort.

Serve with knife and fork and pour a chilled Cotes du Rhone.Italian Burrata 
With Nectarines And Corn On Tuscan Bread(Serves 4)8 slices of rustic (Tuscan) bread, grilled or toasted

3 small ripe nectarines cut into small wedges (or 6 fresh apricots)

1/3 cup chopped fresh basil, plus few leaves for garnish

1 fresh Serrano chili, thinly sliced

2 teaspoons white balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

4 ears corn, shucked and silks removed

8 ounces fresh burrata, drained and patted dry

Flaked salt, to tasteTo prepare:In a medium bowl, add nectarines, basil, chili, vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper, and gently toss together. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Let marinate at least 30 minutes at room temperature or up to two hours in the refrigerator.

Working on the grill or a stovetop grill pan heat until hot. Brush or drizzle the bread with oil and grill until charred marks appear, about two minutes per side. Set aside.

Brush the ears of corn with oil and grill on all sides until warmed with a few charred spots. Transfer the corn to a deep bowl and with a sharp knife, cut kernels off the cob. Add grilled corn to the marinated nectarines and gently toss, taste and adjust the seasonings.To serve: Spoon nectarine/corn mixture onto a large platter. Tear the burrata into eight to 12 good-size pieces, and arrange them over the salad. Sprinkle flaked salt over the burrata and drizzle with olive oil.

Serve with grilled Tuscan bread, knife and fork, and pour a chilled Sauvignon Blanc.

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