Guest Post: Spooky Sandwiches

Saturday, October 29, 2011

My friend Maia is a wonderful violinist and chef and writes the blog Sweet Alchemies where she combines her love to cooking with her love of music.  Today she is guest posting with some ghostly monte christo sandwiches for the upcoming holiday.  Thanks Maia!
Halloween is big in our house. Last year around this time, my husband had been traveling extensively for work. He had Halloween night free, however, and flew all the way back to LA just to spend it with me and our friends at a small gathering at our place. Naturally, I had to make the journey worth his while from a culinary standpoint. I spent every spare moment of the three days leading up to pumpkin day preparing an elaborate feast that would have made Martha proud.
{Gumdrop toppers for "Devil's Food Cupcakes." Get it? Not sure what got into me last year...}
Everyone's favorite snack, by far, was the "Ghost of Monte Cristo" sandwich. As luck would have it, these babies were the simplest to prepare. I will not be outdoing myself to nearly the same extent this year; in fact, I've elected to have a potluck, to which my contribution will be a repeat of last year's standout offering.
Monte Cristo Sandwiches

(The "Ghost" Idea c/o Martha Stewart; the recipe, my own)

For two large sandwiches:

4 slices rich white bread (such as buttermilk or potato)

Two slices of swiss cheese

Two slices of Muenster cheese

Red currant jelly

Dijon mustard

2 slices of turkey sandwich meat

2 slices of ham sandwich meat

1 egg

Spalsh of milk

1/4 tsp salt

Powdered sugar to taste (optional)

Spread a thin layer of currant jelly on two slices of bread, and a thin layer of mustard on the remaining two slices. Put the swiss cheese on top of the jelly-coated bread and the muenster on top of the mustard-coated bread. Next, layer one slice of turkey on each jelly/swiss piece and one slice of ham on each mustard/muenster piece. Put the halves together and cut into the sandwich with the cookie cutter of your choice.
In a bowl big enough to dip the sandwich without ruining its shape, beat the egg well. Add a splash of milk and the salt and whisk again. Dip both sides of the sandwich in the egg mixture.

Butter your griddle and cook the sandwiches over medium heat for about 4 minutes per side, or until golden brown and the cheese has melted.
Dust the sandwiches with powdered sugar and serve immediately.
For a musical pairing, enjoy Beethoven's "Ghost" Trio. The piece is so named for the simple reason that the music is incredibly haunting. It's extremely special to me personally, as it was the first piece of chamber music I performed live on the radio as a teenager. I'll never forget the experience of sharing such truly miraculous music onstage with my friends for an audience. The experience was instrumental in leading me to aspire toward not only being a violinist, but specifically a chamber musician. I hope you'll enjoy it even a fraction as much as I do.

Oh yeah... and Happy Halloween!
{Our pup, Poochini, in his costume last year}

1 comment:

  1. These Monte Cristo sandwiches will haunt me if I don't make them SOON -- a treat to look forward to, even post-Halloween. Thanks for hosting this "ghost guest" post!

    Maia, I loved reading about your history and the start of your career. Isn't it wonderful to be so moved by music that it becomes a part of your life -- becomes your life? Beethoven influenced my "formative years," too. The "Ghost Trio" was perfect to listen to this morning in the damp, autumn darkness. So nice of you to fill in for your friend, too! ... and Poochini is as cute as can be! :)