Not having lettuce isn’t a problem for this “BLT”. This bacon and tomato sandwich includes an herb aioli and toasted sourdough.
I was craving a BLT last week. It was all I could think about whenever I passed by the ripening tomatoes on my kitchen window sill. I finally gave in to making one; sure enough, I didn’t have any lettuce. None in the fridge. None in the garden. I even texted my neighbor, who I knew was at work, to see if she had any in her garden. I at least started with, “Not an emergency…” Luckily, she’s cool and said she’d do the same. Unfortunately, because of the heat, her romaine bolted.
Regardless of the setbacks to having the sandwich, I felt I deserved, I pushed through. I still made this delicious B
LT. I had plenty of fresh herbs on my deck planter. So, I grabbed a handful of basil, chives, and parsley to mix into the mayo with fresh lemon zest, juice, and seasonings. Between the crispy bread, bacon and tomato, and bright aioli, I forgot that I was missing lettuce on my BLT.
I am confident you’ll enjoy this recipe if you find yourself without lettuce or want to skip it.
Choosing the Right Tomato For Your Sandwich
Ultimately, the choice of tomato type depends on personal preference and the overall flavor profile you aim to achieve.
When it comes to crafting the perfect sandwich, the choice of tomato can make all the difference in elevating the flavor profile to new heights. Opting for the right tomato type is crucial for achieving that ideal balance of sweetness, juiciness, and acidity that complements the other components of your sandwich.
Heirloom tomatoes, with their diverse shapes and colors, offer a rich, nuanced taste that adds a layer of sophistication. On the other hand, beefsteak tomatoes, known for their large size and meaty texture, are a go-to option for a hearty and juicy bite. Cherry or grape tomatoes, with their burst of sweetness, bring a delightful pop to each mouthful. Ultimately, the choice of tomato type depends on personal preference and the overall flavor profile you aim to achieve.
So, the next time you assemble your favorite sandwich, consider the tomato type and watch as it transforms your culinary creation.
Here’s how to make my Bacon and Tomato Sandwich with Herb Aioli…
Mise En Place
For the Sandwich
- 8 slices Bacon – cooked to your desired doneness
- 4 slices of toasted sourdough bread slices
- 1 large heirloom tomato – cut into 4 thick slices
For the Aioli
- 3/4 cup of mayonnaise
- 1/2 tbsp. of lemon zest
- 1 tbsp. of lemon juice
- 3 tbsp. of fresh herbs – chopped (I used a combo of chives, basil, thyme and parsley)
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 small shallot – peeled and minced
Recipe Steps and Cooking Tips
Step 1: Crispy Bacon Bliss
Let’s kick things off with the star of the show – bacon! We all know and love the savory, crispy goodness that bacon brings to the table. Start by frying up 8 slices to your desired level of crispiness. Whether you prefer it slightly chewy or extra crispy, the choice is yours. Once your bacon reaches perfection, let it rest on a paper towel to drain any excess oil, allowing it to cool to the ideal temperature.
Step 2: Toasted Sourdough Elegance
While the bacon is sizzling away, take a moment to toast 4 slices of sourdough bread. There’s something wonderful about the combination of the slightly tangy sourdough and the smoky bacon – it’s a match made in sandwich heaven!
Step 3: Herb-Infused Aioli Magic
Now, let’s talk about the secret sauce that takes this sandwich to the next level – the Herb Aioli. In a small bowl, whisk together 3/4 cup of mayonnaise, a minced shallot, 1/2 tablespoon of lemon zest, and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. The real magic happens when you add a generous handful of fresh herbs – think chives, basil leaves, thyme, and parsley. The herbs bring a burst of freshness that perfectly complements the richness of the bacon.
Season your aioli with a pinch of salt and a grind of black pepper, adjusting to your taste preferences. This aioli isn’t just a condiment; it’s a flavor-packed symphony that ties the entire sandwich together.
Step 4: Building the Ultimate Bite
With all the components ready, it’s time to assemble these mouthwatering sandwiches. Grab two slices of your perfectly toasted sourdough and generously spread 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons of the herb aioli. Here’s where the magic happens – layer on two thick slices of heirloom tomato. The juicy sweetness of the tomato is the perfect contrast to the savory bacon.
But we’re not stopping there – add a generous helping of crispy bacon on top of the tomato. The combination of textures, from the crunch of the bacon to the juiciness of the tomato, is pure perfection.
Finish off your creation by topping it with an optional additional dollop of aioli (because why not? 🤷🏾♀️) and cap it with the remaining slices of toasted bread. Press it all together gently, and you’re ready to experience the symphony of flavors in every bite.
Tip 1: Don’t have sourdough bread? No problem. Use your favorite bread instead.
Tip 2: Toast your bread in a pan with a little fat. Using butter or even a little bit of the bacon fat adds so much more flavor. It can also give you a nice crispy toast if you’re like me and don’t own a toaster.
Tip 3: Use your favorite tomato variety and ensure it’s ripe.
Tip 4: Cut your tomato with a serrated knife to prevent squishing the tomato. Tomatoes have thick skin, and the teeth of a serrated blade are perfect for breaking through it.
All in All
Undoubtedly, not having lettuce couldn’t stop me from enjoying end-of-summer tomatoes. This bacon and tomato sandwich is filling, tasty, and easy to make. I truly appreciate the freshness of the aioli and the balance between flavors and textures. All around, this is one of my favorite sandwiches of the summer.
If you’re looking for another way to use up those tomatoes before fall arrives, check out my recipe for Fresh Marinated Tomatoes.
Bacon and Tomato Sandwich with Herb Aioli
For the Sandwich
- 8 slices Bacon, cooked
- 4 slices Toasted sourdough bread
- 1 large heirloom tomato cut into 4 thick slices
For the Aioli
- 3/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 tbsp lemon zest
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 3 tbsp fresh herbs, chopped Chives, Basil leaves, thyme and parsley
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 small shallot, minced
- Start by frying the bacon to your desired crispiness. Drain excess oil from your cooked bacon strips and set them aside to cool.
- Next, toast your sourdough bread slices.
- Make the aioli: Whisk together the mayo, minced shallot, lemon zest, lemon juice, and herbs in a small bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
- Slice your tomato into several thick rounds.
- Assemble your sandwiches: Spread 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons of aioli on two toasted bread slices. Layer two slices of tomato onto the dressed toasts. Top the tomato with 4 pieces of bacon.
- Finish each sandwich by topping it with additional aioli (optional) and the remaining toasted bread slices. Serve and enjoy!