Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Murder Sandwich

Don't Worry: It's Vegetarian

Recipes From Books
But not from cookbooks...

I was reading Robert Crais' latest book, The Watchman, and Elvis Cole was cooking a vegetarian sandwich for his friend Joe Pike and the girl he was guarding. The recipe, simple as it was, sounded pretty good so I tried it on Sunday night when we had broiled salmon and again last night when I grilled some tri-tips (yeah, I'm not a vegetarian). It's a good vegetable side dish or it's good as a sandwich...

Elvis Cole's Veggie Sandwiches

Take equal amounts of zucchini, yellow squash, and eggplant. Slice them lengthwise into strips about 3-4" long and about 1/4" square. If you're using a big eggplant, you might want to put the slices of eggplant in a colander and toss them with salt and let them sit for a bit to remove any bitterness. After letting them sit, rinse them thoroughly.

When you're ready to cook them, heat a skillet on high heat and toss the vegetable slices with a generous amount of olive oil, cracked pepper, and salt. I also added a dash of spicy no-salt seasoning and a few sprigs of fresh thyme. When the skillet is hot, dump in the veggies and saute on high heat until they are tender and just a bit browned - don't overcook them.

For a side dish, you're done. For the sandwiches, take some good bread, toasted or crusty, and spread hummus on it and top with the grilled vegetables.

When we had the salmon, we had a baguette, so I just cut it into thin oval slices and topped each slice with hummus and ate it with the vegetables as a side. Mmmm.

Note that this doesn't mean I'm going to try Kinsey Millhone's peanut butter and olive sandwiches from the Sue Grafton books or try to emulate Stephanie Plum's fast food addictions from the Janet Evanovich books.

By the way, The Watchman was great and I highly recommend Robert Crais if you haven't read him before. It's the second L.A. detective book that I've read in recent months that takes place largely in the Echo Park area which I'd happened to have driven around in last time I was in L.A. The other one was Echo Park, by Michael Connelly. Even though I've only been there twice, I have a much better feel for the geography of these books now. I even made a special point to drive around the areas where Elvis Cole and Harry Bosch "live".

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