Monday, July 25, 2011

'mater sandwiches

Remember when you were young and you thought your parents didn't know very much? You thought their ideas of good food were just plain gross? As I've gotten older, I, like most other people, have come to realize my parents knew quite a bit about many things. The subject of today's post will be what they knew about a simple garden delicacy - the tomato sandwich.

Mom worked full time at the school with us as we were growing up. She'd come home from work and start in on dinner because my dad always liked an early dinner. We'd usually have our bellies full and the dishes put away long before five o'clock. On the weekends, she'd cook us breakfast and "supper" on Saturday. On Sunday morning, amidst getting herself and two girls ready for church, she'd always make us a home-cooked breakfast. Made from scratch biscuits, fluffy scrambled eggs which she'd added just the right amount of milk to in order for them to be fluffy and then a meat, either sausage or ham. Then, we were off to church. As soon as we came home from church, Mom took her stance in the kitchen again preparing our Sunday dinner. It didn't dawn on me until after I was off and married that the amount of time she spent in the kitchen making food for us was A LOT! And she never complained. I'm sorry for my immediate family because I'm not as good as my mother and often, I complain! LOL

Sunday evenings after church were reserved for simple meals as we'd already had two big meals that day. In the summertime, those simple meals were always tomato sandwiches. Not BLTs. Just a simple tomato sandwich with occasional bacon fried to put on the sandwich. Mostly though, it was just simple white Wonder-bread, mayo and the most ripe tomato fresh from the vines in the garden out behind the house.

Now, as a child and even a teenager, I could not possibly understand the joys of a tomato, slapped between two pieces of bread and with dabs of mayo. Yuck. Have I ever told you how much of a picky eater I once was? Well, tomato sandwiches and picky eaters DO NOT make a good pairing. Apparently, I ate them sometimes though because I remember telling my neighbor that I was soooo tired of tomato sandwiches I was ready for winter!! Maybe it was the Wonder-bread - I hate Wonder-bread. Biting into that moist white bread and then having to scrape it off the roof of your mouth... yuck!
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Fast forward to now. We've been visiting our families for the past few weeks. Can you guess what one thing was near the top of my list of "Can't wait to have when we get back to the states"? Yeah, yeah, yeah... a tomato sandwich. Not a BLT. G-Dub still doesn't understand how I can eat a sandwich with just tomato and bacon - with no lettuce. But, well, it's easy. I've upgraded my breads to wheat and even added toasting it into the "recipe". But the ingredients still remain the same. Slices of tomato right off the vine and real bacon as the treat. A few days ago, my dad and I were here alone and decided tomato sandwiches sounded good for lunch. We both decided this was probably the best one we'd ever had. That tomato was divine. One bite and my whole mouth was immersed in tomato goodness - that sweet and savory flavor. It was just plain good. Simple as that. I guess Mom and Dad have been right all along. You can't beat a tomato sandwich for a simple, quick country meal. ;)

1 comment:

  1. I was one of those weird kids who loved tomato sandwiches. As you said, perfectly sun ripened tomatoes, just picked from the vine, a little mayo, and white bread (I've progressed to whole wheat now that I'm an adult).

    I also ate avocado sandwiches (mashed avocado, lightly salted, on white bread). That was something my dad ate as a child, and a part of his Italian heritage that he passed on to me. Mom couldn't understand it. lol I haven't had one in years, but I love avocados even more than I used to, so I may have to revisit that sandwich.

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