BLAT with Lemon-Basil Vegenaise
I feel like there are a few things we need to get straight.
For starters, you’re ridiculous and amazing. Because, holy bananas. You’re here. And you’ve made it through one of the rockiest summer blogs of my ever lovin’ life. Evacuation, chaos on the homefront, moving out of a home, moving into a home, pounds and mounds of work and traveling, a really bad dye job, and thirteen separate recipes I promised but have yet to deliver on. I mean, for reals. You have the patience of Job and heaven bless you for that.
For seconders, let’s talk Vegan for a minute, shall we? This old blog of mine has had an increasing focus on vegan eating, but I don’t feel like I ever really nailed down for you what that looks like in my own life. Because I never declared I was “going vegan” just focusing on plant-based eating (which is, you know, lots of vegany meals) and I need you to not panic if you see me ordering nuggets at Chick-fil-A.
My emphasis on vegan/plant-based eating is simply that…an emphasis. I’ve discovered for myself that I need to CLAIM the term in order to help me live the term. And saying lackadaisically, “ooooh, I’ll just add a few more veggies to my hunk of beef” wasn’t cutting it. Because time and again, I found myself still reaching for the naughty foods first, and letting all the proper foods sit on the backburner.
So, the focus for me has been 85-90% vegan since January, and girlfriend. It’s been so good to me. I’ve dropped nearly 12 pounds. I rarely if ever crave food anymore, especially Hot Tamales and Swedish Fish. And, I’ve discovered true joy in creating plant-based recipes. Not that you’ve seen many of those. My wild schedule has kept cooking time rawwwther limited these days, but there are a million more recipes to come and I do so hope that you’ll consider joining me on the path to 85% plantie. The grass really is greener over here.
It’s also…well….delicious. Take, for instance, dinner the other night. We made BLAT’s gone vegan, but you can use bacon if you feel there is no possible substitute for the stuff. As for me and my house? We’re split right in half on that topic, with two of my kids enjoying these sammy’s with the vegan bacon, and two refusing to touch the stuff with a ten-foot stick.
They stuffed their sandwiches with barbecue potato chips instead and called it a day. Not a bad way to end a summer day, methinks. Not a bad way at all.
BLAT with Lemon-Basil Mayonnaise
Yield: 4 sandwiches
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
For a simple summer meal, this incredible sandwich delivers! I was worried about swapping out regular bacon for vegan bacon, but thought it would be worth a try. Definitely a difference, but if you're like me and prefer to give up a bit of flavor for the added benefit of meat-free mealtiming it, then make the swap. Otherwise, go with real bacon or go home. I replaced the traditional "BLAT" lettuce with sprouts and didn't feel even a little bit bad, but if you'd rather stick with a crisp slice of lettuce, by all means, rock it!
1/3 cup Vegenaise (or mayonnaise)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1/2 lemon, zested
Fresh ground pepper
4 slices good bread, toasted
1 super ripe tomato, sliced thin
1 avocado, pitted, peeled, and sliced thin
8 slices bacon (or vegan bacon), cooked until crisp
1/2 cup broccoli sprouts
In a small bowl, stir together the Vegenaise, basil, lemon, and pepper.
Pile tomatoes, avocado slices, bacon, and broccoli on top of each sandwich. Top with an absurd amount of the basil-spiked Vegenaise. Serve immediately and enjoy!