Every time I look at this sandwich, my mind goes blank and I start to salivate a little. It’s not just a BLT — it’s something to behold: creamy, crispy, salty, sweet and juicy. The mind blankness makes it hard to write … let alone come up with some entertaining introduction. So, let’s pretend that I already gave you some well-written lead in. Please?
Ok. So, this sandwich … I’ve been lovingly calling it the BLAT, which stands for Bacon, Lettuce, Avocado and Tomato Sandwich. It’s amazing. Creamy avocado, sweet heirloom tomatoes, salty bacon and crisp lettuce – like a bite of heaven.
BLT sandwiches became a minor obsession of mine in early August. As soon the first heirloom tomatoes appeared, visions of colorful slices in bacon-loaded sandwiches danced in my head. I couldn’t wait to have one. This whole thing came as a surprise though since I have never been a big BLT fan. I mean, it’s just lettuce, tomato and bacon, right? That’s what I have always thought.
I was wrong. So wrong. A BLT sandwich can be something amazing, if you do it right. And by that, I mean that it’s all in the ingredients.
You have to start with good bread. I like a nice semolina bread with a soft crumb and a not-to-hard crust. This loaf that I came from the bakery of my local grocery store and was very good — similar to my favorite semolina loaf that I buy at the farmers market whenever I can. But whatever bread you love works. Perhaps a few slices of a fab multigrain loaf?
Next to the bread, the most important part of a BLT is the bacon (of course!). I like my BLT bacon to be thick, meaty and really flavorful. It can’t be salt-overload. It needs to have subtle whispers of layered flavor. As for cooking method? Use whatever method you prefer … but I totally baked my bacon to avoid the mess.
Then there is the other fillings. Don’t let up on the quality now. The better your ingredients, the better your sandwich. I swear. For this one, I used heirloom tomatoes, avocado and really good, fresh green leaf lettuce. Because I added avocado, I skipped the mayo. The avocado adds the right amount of creaminess to the sandwich on its own.
Once you have all that, you only need to put it together and enjoy. How could you not?
Do you like BLTs? What are the most important components?
Bacon, Lettuce, Avocado and Tomato Sandwiches (AKA the BLAT)
- 8 slices great bread such as semolina bread from a bakery
- 1 Hass avocado pitted, peeled and sliced
- 1 heirloom tomato sliced
- 4 leaves green leaf lettuce
- 1 lb really good bacon prepared
- Lay out four slices of the bread on a cutting board. Top each with 1/4 of the avocado slices. Follow with tomato slices, lettuce and finally bacon. Enjoy immediately.
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. Her latest cookbook is The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook, published by Rockridge Press, which focuses on quick, easy, from-scratch cooking for busy people. A single mother to two kids in middle school, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.