Guilty Secret Sandwich

I call it that because I can only have one when the rest of the family will be gone for a few days – and I’m not going to be around other people for a few days either. I’ve had people call it a reuben. It’s related, more or less.

Bread: Coarse black rye.
Sauerkraut: the strongest you can get. I don’t want it so strong it will come when called. I want it so strong that when you call it’ll flip you off and keep beating up the pickles that are trying to hide in the corner.
Meat: Garlic sausage. No, not sausage with a bit of garlic in it. This sausage should cause vampires to stagger at 20 paces if you wave it in their general direction.
Cheese: I want a cheese that will hold its own with the sauerkraut and sausage. Limburger works, as does Oakoka [typo, sorry]. Esrom’s actually a better flavor but fights to make its point.
Mustard: Yes, mustard, not thousand island. Brown and bold, hot enough to strip the nasal passages whenever jar is opened.

Assemble, toast, eat.

Notice the theme? Everything is powerfully strong. All the flavors are actually quite good, but usually so dominates when alone that I have to pass (or sample, slowly). Put together, however, each fighting for dominance results in a sandwich that while flavorful is actually rather balanced.

If I liked beer, this would be the one where I broke out a monster. As it is, the best thing I’ve found to drink with it is water – pure, simple, palate-cleansing water. As for a side? Salted Lemons stand up well.

sigh. OK, you’ve probably not run across these, either. You’re going to need a 12 to 18 lemons, a bowl of kosher salt, and a clean (cannning level) quart jar with lid. Cut the lemon so it blossoms – that is, cut in quarters but leave the end connected. Sprinkle the fruit with about a teaspoon of salt, fully covering. Now put the quarters back together and shove the lemon into the jar, pressing firmly (which will release some of the juice). Repeat till the jar is full. If it’s full of lemons but not covered by juice, add juice till covered. (Add about a teaspoon of salt per lemon’s worth of juice you add.) Let it ripen in a cool room for at least 30 days, but it will keep for up to a year.

Withdraw the lemon (use tongs to avoid contaminating what you leave), rinse briefly, and cut into bite-sized sections. It stands up well against the GS sandwich.

Oh – it’s Moroccan, and formal recipes will also toss coriander seed, peppercorns, cinnamon sticks and cloves into the jar when it’s first made. If you do that (2-5 of everything but the cinnamon which gets one stick) toss them in before you add the first lemon.


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