A BLT is one of the easiest sandwiches to make and is perfect for lunch or a late breakfast. The secret to a good one is not a fancy technique, but like most things delicious, quality ingredients. The key is using fresh tomatoes - heirloom if you have them, however beefsteak of any other good slicing tomato will do nicely. Do not buy a tomato in a grocery store unless you are positive the thing was picked locally and recently. Tomatoes shipped from who knows where or hydroponic ones just won't do. The other key to a successful BLT is mayo. I have never met a store bought mayo that I've liked and have become a bit obsessed with making it recently. As someone who did not really excel in chemistry in high school or college, making mayo can make you feel as though you are a master chemist. Throw in liquid, fat, acid and bam! You have made an emulsion from liquid. Amazing. The bacon, equally important. My preference is slab cut bacon but not super thick. Many good butchers will cut it for you at your desired thickness. Organic hormone free is obviously preferable for many reasons. If you get the store bought, pre-packaged stuff, Applegate Farms is pretty good. If you are in North Brooklyn, hit the Meat Hook or Marlow and Daughters for the best bacon around.
Order of events for the BLT: make mayo, cook bacon, slice tomatoes, toast bread, assemble.
Making Mayo - so simple. Thanks to Nathan Panum from brooklynhardcandy.com for finally setting me straight with proportions and the process!
Ingredients: 1 tablespoon dijon mustard, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 2 egg yolks (no white needed!), 1 cup of neutral oil (grapeseed or sunflower oil preferred). Do not use 100% olive oil! If you really want to use some olive oil, add only 25% to the neutral oil base. A food processor makes things easy, though if you want to whisk this by hand, do it up. Follow the same steps if doing so.
1) add mustard, lemon juice and egg yolks. Blend ingredients together on a slow-medium speed
2) when the other ingredients have fused, with a slow and steady stream, add all of the oil to the mixture.
3) if your mayo is too thick, add a tiny bit of cold water. If it's too thin, try a little more oil. If that doesn't work, try the whole thing again.
4) add salt and pepper to taste
1) put bacon in cold skillet (preferably cast iron), turn heat to low-medium.
2) cook until slightly brown (or desired crispness), flip, then repeat on the other side.
1) while bacon is cooking, slice the tomatoes in 1/4 to 1/2 inch slices
2) get lettuce / greens out, (crispy romaine is great, as are mixed greens). Honestly, I used very tender chard as it was what was in the garden.
3) when bacon is almost finished, toast the toast. I used Rudi's Spelt bread for this one. One up me and bake your own bread!
4) when bacon has finished cooking, put them on paper towels to drain some grease off.
5) Spread mayo on both sides of the toast, then add bacon, lettuce, tomato.