Unusual sandwich fillings

I rummaged around the fridge earlier, looking for something to put in a sandwich. Tuna, cheese, tomatoes, beetroot, pastrami, nothing appealed. Then I spotted a tupperware of leftover cooked cauliflower from last night’s supper. I’d planned to reheat it tonight with sausages but the man will be late home this evening and probably won’t want a meal so waste not, want not, I heated it up in the microwave, spread it on a couple of slices of wholemeal bread and had cauliflower sandwiches. Delicious! Come to think of it, a rasher of grilled bacon or tomatoes on top would’ve been good too.

It’s always puzzled me that so many people strip away all of the green part of cauliflower and just use the florets. So much of the flavour and colour is in those leaves. In fact, it’s sometimes hard to find cauliflowers with a generous helping of leaves, too many of the supermarkets strip them before putting them on sale but when you do find them, here’s the bestest way to cook it.

Mashed cauliflower

  1. Buy a nice, fresh cauliflower with plenty of green leaves.
  2. Pull the leaves off from the base, peel the soft leafy part and keep in a bowl of water. Discard the thick stalks.
  3. Chop the white florets, rinse and put into a saucepan. Add the leaves.
  4. Add water and salt, bring to the boil then keep on a rolling boil for about 15-20 minutes, depending on the size of the cauliflower.
  5. Drain the cooked cauliflower, add a generous knob of butter (and optionally some ground pepper) and mash lightly
  6. Serve as an accompaniment to just about any meal.

I’d like to tell you that this is a really good alternative to mashed potatoes and it is… but the truth is if I’m cooking a roast dinner I cook both. And roasties too. So there.

Where was I? Oh yes, I could really get into the idea of unusual sandwich feelings. I think it runs in the family – my grandfather loved condensed milk sandwiches and a cousin’s daily breakfast as a child was sugar sandwiches dunked in tea (bleugh) but for when I’m short of inspiration, do you guys have any ideas?

20 Responses to “Unusual sandwich fillings”

  1. Alison
    September 27th, 2006 15:59

    We were just talking about how much we love cauliflower last night — but we never buy it. I think we’re going to have to try your recipe.

    Sammich fillings? I love avocado, lettuce, and tomato (with a little mayo, salt, and pepper on it).

  2. Karan
    September 27th, 2006 17:49

    I love cream of cauliflower soup and my favorite way to enjoy cauliflower is drizzle it with olive oil and kosher salt and the roast in the oven.

  3. Karan
    September 27th, 2006 17:50

    Will you please explain condensed milk sandwiches?

  4. ally bean
    September 27th, 2006 18:06

    I’m a sandwich purist, but if this tasted good to you– yeah! And I’m with Karan here in wondering about the condensed milk sandwich. Sounds unique and very sweet.

  5. Neil T.
    September 27th, 2006 19:40

    Nutella sandwiches, covered with hot chocolate sauce – great desert.

  6. daisy
    September 27th, 2006 19:43

    Unique and very sweet? Hah, yes! I don’t know if condensed milk is the same stateside but here’s a picture of the stuff we get over here – it’s a thick, creamy sweet concoction and makes me feel a bit queasy but he loved it (and lived to a ripe old age on it).

  7. daisy
    September 27th, 2006 19:44

    Nutella? Eeek. I hate that stuff. But Karan, I’ve come across recipes for cauliflower soup and always meant to try it – will do it this weekend, thank you!

  8. stroppycow
    September 27th, 2006 22:41

    I used to have bread and sweetened condensed milk for my “gouter/quatre heure” as a child, glad to see I am not the only one to like it. We also used to have bread butter and ovaltine.
    I was going to say nutella and peanut butter but since you don’t like nutella it’s probably not the best option. Peanut butter and banana on brown bread is nice, or cream cheese and strawberries.
    If you have leftover potatoes as well as cauliflower you can make pao bhaji in a roll (it’s a very buttery veggie curry that is normally served warm in soft white buttered rolls)

  9. daisy
    September 27th, 2006 23:49

    Thank you stroppy, the pao bhaji sounds lovely – would you have a good recipe to share? Bread, butter and ovaltine? You mean you dipped the bread & butter in the ovaltine? Not spread it on the bread? :-)

    I’m afraid I can vomit at the smell of peanut butter from 100m so that’s another no-no. Hmm, I seem to have gotten quite picky about food in my old age.

  10. David
    September 28th, 2006 01:30

    My brother used to eat condensed milk sandwiches; I was a syrup sandwich lad myself. Amazingly I have no fillings!

    Can I come round for a roast when I get back to Blighty? I don’t have an oven — I do miss them so!

  11. daisy
    September 28th, 2006 07:53

    David, you’ve reminded me that a Belgian friend of mine loved nothing better than a slice of thick toasted bread lathered with maple syrup (topped with lashings of cream at weekends) which I guess is no more odd than scones and jam.

    And of course you can come for a nice big roast – although methinks you’d prefer your mum’s :-)

  12. Peacechick Mary
    September 28th, 2006 12:28

    That sweetened condensed milk is used to make key lime pies and creamy fudge. I can’t imagine it on bread. As far as sandwiches, we have a family joke. No matter what is leftover for dinner, Eo says, “That’d be good on a sandwich tomorrow.” Lasagne sandwich?? No, I don’t think so. But, the Earl of Sandwich thought it was a good way to tote your meal around, so anything goes.

  13. stroppycow
    September 28th, 2006 13:24

    The bread butter and ovalitne… spread the butter, put a spoonful of ovalitne on top then slightly tip and tap the slice of bread so the powder covers the whole slice, it sticks slightly to the butter. Easy. We also used to suck the condensed milk straight out of the tube (and sweetened chestnut puree too)

  14. Murphy
    September 28th, 2006 13:37

    Baker’s Complete – it’s delicious! (not!)

  15. daisy
    September 28th, 2006 14:24

    Mary, I’ve used condensed milk to make banoffee pie (a lovely recipe from my daughter in law that I must dig out and post). I could quite fancy a lasagne sandwich though, shame it freezes so well and there’s no excuse to spread it over a nice warm ciabatta…

    Stroppy, eeeeuw! Except for the chestnut purée, I’ve tried that a few times and loved it.

    Thanks for the Bakers Complete tip Murphy, if it gives you such a beautiful coat then it must be good! I switched a while back to the Tesco Value kibble and serve it with a selection of offal (liver, kidneys, etc.) all cooked and frozen in handy little tupperwares for my beloved mutt.

  16. Anji
    September 28th, 2006 14:46

    I’ve heard of condensed milk sandwiches too. My mum had a friend at school who used to eat cake sandwiches. Sardine and grated carrot sandwiches were on the menu for me this lunchtime.

  17. daisy
    September 28th, 2006 14:53

    Ah now Anji, do you mean carottes rapées, the ones in a jar of vinegar? I would definitely have those in a sandwich!

  18. Suzy
    September 29th, 2006 22:43

    My brother used to eat potato chip sandwiches. Salted potato chips, slightly crushed, between 2 slices of bread. I’m pleased to report that he has grown out of this phase.

    My Dad used to eat Marmite on toast. ~shudder~ Does that count?

  19. Nancy
    September 30th, 2006 12:45

    Brazilian friends taught me to appreciate condensed milk in the form of brigadeirao. Never tried it on a sandwich, though. I like simple sandwiches. Thick bread, preferably sourdough, and a single filling, like crisp bacon or leftover turkey. I love chocolate sandwiches – french bread with squares of chocolate .

  20. felicity
    October 1st, 2006 13:03

    “why don’t you…” has a lot to answer for. there’s the “bread doughnut” – jam sandwiches, quartered and dipped in scrambled eggs, shallow fried in butter, then dipped in sugar. An alternative that we tried one period between xmas and new year was cheese sandwiches, quartered, dippled in herby scrambled egg and shallow fried in olive oil. nicer than it sounds actually!
    hmmmm condensed milk sandwiches, almost on par with sugar puff sandwiches.

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