Sunday, June 14, 2009


This week's Serious Eats Weekend Cook and Tell focus was on sandwiches.

We had a hankering for Vietnamese cabbage salad, so I thought why not use it as a filling for a sandwich? Cole slaw is in corned beef sandwiches.

Cabbage Salad
Cabbage salad

This is made to taste. By my best estimate, these are the measurements:

1 Tbsp sriracha
3 Tbsp rice vinegar
5 Tbsp fresh lime juice
6 Tbsp nuoc mam (fish sauce)
2 Tbsp sugar
ground black pepper
1/2 head cabbage, shredded
1/2 c Thai basil, shredded (mint is preferred)
1 c carrots, shredded

Mix the liquid ingredients, sugar, and pepper. Adjust to taste for sweetness, tartness, and fishness. Set aside for 30 minutes.

Combine the dressing with the cabbage, basil (mint), and carrots. Mix well. Set aside in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes. If it needs to sit for longer, drain the dressing so the cabbage doesn't steep too much.

Mint is traditionally used, and I prefer it as it brightens the salad, but couldn't find any at the Asian market we frequent. Thai basil gives a rounded licorice flavor.

Daikon Carrots Cucumber
Marinated daikon and carrot sticks with cucumber

Since I had leftover dressing, I used the remainder to mix with carrot and daikon sticks. The cucumber sticks were tossed in later. The flavor was on the light side since they did not have time to sit for a couple weeks.

Grilled Chicken
Grilled Cajun (front) and Asian (back) chicken

Bug grilled the chicken with two different marinades.

The Cajun version had Cajun seasoning dry rubbed onto the chicken and set aside for an hour in the fridge.

The Asian version was marinated and set aside for an hour in the fridge as well. Again, I do not measure ingredients when I make the marinade, so the measurements below are an estimate.

1/2 c shoyu
2 Tbsp sriracha
1/4 c sake
2 tsp sesame oil

Cilantro Thai Basil
Cilantro and Thai basil

Fresh cilantro and Thai basil will be added to the sandwich. Since I am not fond of cilantro, that's all Bug's.

Hoisin Sriracha
Hoisin and sriracha sauces

Hoisin and sriracha are the condiments for the sandwich.

The sun went down so I had to take the remaining pictures indoors in my incandescent-lit home. :(

While we would have preferred a baguette, we ended up with Italian loaves instead since that was all that was available. Too much bread!

Cajun Chicken Sandwich
Cajun chicken sandwich

In retrospect, we should have gone for a more subtle, perhaps no, marinade.

The Cajun spices were potent and competed well with the pungent cabbage salad. The combination was still all right since the salad was crunchy, sweet, and tart over the peppery and spicy chicken.

Shoyu Chicken Sandwich
Shoyu chicken sandwich

The shoyu chicken matched the sandwich a little better. Perhaps it's because I liked the chicken more. I used the cucumber, daikon, and carrot sticks inside my sandwich, but not the cilantro, hoisin, nor the sriracha.

Bug was quite happy with the way both chickens turned out, enjoying both sandwiches equally. He liked the cabbage salad, basil, and cilantro combination, along with the hoisin and sriracha spread.

Before Bug and I ate the sandwiches, I cut the tops off the bread so they did not require an unhinged jaw to eat.

- Cassaendra

4 deep thoughts:

Arm70 16 June, 2009 16:57  

Been meaning to tell you that I just love your blog. Great pics, great recipes and ideas. I like the way you write. : )


SicklyBug and Cassaendra 16 June, 2009 19:19  

Hi Arm!

Thanks for stopping by and the compliment! :)

You have a great idea for a blog -- I love bentos! Your dishes look good and are colorful.

Mrs. L 17 June, 2009 01:28  

Love your sandwich recipe. I was busy and just made a grilled cheese but didn't even bother to post.

SicklyBug and Cassaendra 17 June, 2009 20:05  

Hello Mrs. L~

Thank you! Aww, grilled cheese would have been good. I'd be pooped if I attended the Great American Food/Music Festival...

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