The other day my boss and I were having a conversation about food. Because we both really LOVE food.
There are, however, two things he doesn’t like from the culinary universe: mayonnaise and tomatoes.
Now (nervous laugh), normally I would totally judge him in regards to the whole no-mayo thing (because it’s a gift from Jesus, himself), but I like him too much as a person to hold it against him.
The not-liking-tomato-thing I can be a little more understanding about.
I didn’t like tomatoes for a long time, myself. When a person preparing my sub would ask if I wanted tomatoes on my whole-wheat turkey sub with mayo, sub oil, lettuce, provolone, pickles and banana peppers I would undoubtedly give them a look reflective of “umm yeah, no, I’ll pass on that grainy, flavorless, watery item that some decide to ruin their sandwiches with, but thanks for asking, you wacko”.
No apologies, here.
Later in life I realized I was missing out. I was missing out because I had the unfortunate experiences of eating tomatoes in their off-season. I jut assumed that they were garbage 365 days a year. My bad, tomatoes, my bad. In their prime, usually late July through early September in the great North East, tomatoes represent Mother Nature to the fullest. Sweet, juicy, refreshing and joyful. Shout out to Gabe Ross for inviting me over to dinner that wonderful summer night in Brooklyn where all my tomato prejudices were put to bed.
What does one do when you got your hands on the bacon-of-all-bacon and desperately need to consume a BLT in the month of March (ahhhhhhhhhh!)?
Tomato Jam, ladies and gentlemen, tomato jam.
Get that disgusted look off your face, Scooter Pie reader, our relationship is nothing without trust.
Oh, and definitely put mayonnaise on your sandwich, for the love of God.
- Bread (Pullman, sourdough, whole-wheat, or whatever you like, you’re the artist)
- Bacon (don’t you dare buy the pre-sliced grocery store stuff. Find a good butcher or find a good farm or at the very least, have your grocery store slice it to order, thickly, from the slab.
- Mayonnaise (you betta, you betta)
- Lettuce (I like romaine)
- Pickles (because they are the ingredient that makes a sandwich a sandwich, don’t debate me on this)
- Tomato Jam
- 2 lbs tomatoes, cored; de-seeded; and diced (Roma work well)
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup onion, small dice
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Add all ingredients to a medium-sized saucepan and stir.
- Bring to a boil and then reduce to medium-low heat. Simmer, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until mixture has reduced to a jam-like consistency, about 1 hour.
- Transfer to a mason jar and keep refrigerated for up to 3 months.
- Cook bacon
- Lightly toast bread
- Spread on mayo
- Spread on tomato jam
- Add lettuce
- Add cooked bacon
- Write me and tell me about how good the tomato jam is