Cheese and mayonaise?
I feel strongly about sandwiches. I love them, but most of all I hate to see them badly treated. A bad sanwich is an insult. Pies, soups, sauces- they can be tricky. Anyone might be distracted at a critical moment and overcook pasta, or burn a sausage. But to make a bad sandwich requires truly obscene sloppiness. You don´t even need great ingredients for a great sandwich. A colection of packets and jars from the dingiest corner shop will have you more than ready to play.
I have been raised in a sandwich loving family. Each one of us has our different take on the things, but we all acknowledge that my sister Gadea is The One. She can turn the least promising heap of ingredients into a tower of beauty. Never mind that the chicken was dry, the lettuce limp, the tomato a sorry January specimen. Put it in her hands and it´s instant couture.
My only quibble with her was our cheese/mayonaise-tomato/butter argument. I have always held that a sandwich that holds cheese should never have mayonaise, and that tomato and butter have no place together under a bread blanket. She disagreed.
And you know what? After years and years, yesterday I skipped my rule, tried it her way, and o my. We were so happy with our sandwich that we watched the entire Switzerland-Turkey football match, and really, that takes a lot of blissed out unconsciousness.
Surprisingly good Chicken Sandwich
Heat up the panini grill.
Shred the chicken (roast, boiled, whatever you have), mix it with mayonaise.
Slice some cheese that melts well. I had semi-cured manchego.
Fill two slices of wholemeal plastic bread, crusts off, with chicken mix. Top with cheese slices and grill.
Meanwhile, thinly slice a tomato and some good sweet-sour gherkins.
Once the sandwich is toasted, open it (careful with those fingers, you know it will be hot). Try to ignore the rather disgusting way it looks, with all that melted cheese and mayo goo.
Overlap the tomato slices, salt them slightly, arrange the pickles, and top again.
Bliss. Utter and complete. We also had chips from a bag and some cucumber mint raita on the side, just for kicks.