An Heirloom Tomato BLT sandwich is the ultimate way to celebrate summer tomatoes, and don’t even think about skipping the brown butter mayonnaise, it’s mandatory.
I’ve been dying to share these Heirloom Tomato BLT sandwiches with you for what seems like ever. This is something I came up with last summer when I was cooking for a bunch of guys in their twenties who were craving filling food that wasn’t too fancy. Dude Food, if you will.
BLTs were on the menu one day for lunch and I knew I had to Le Petit Chef-ify them somehow- people don’t hire a private chef for plain, unimaginative sandwiches. So in addition to using plump, juicy heirloom tomatoes, flavorful sourdough bread, organic bacon (my go-to is Applegate Farms Organic Sunday Bacon) and the best farmer’s market lettuce money could buy (little gem was made for BLTs), I figured I should also doctor up the mayo situation, and brown butter was the obvious choice.
I certainly didn’t invent this brown butter mayonnaise; the recipe for that is something I saw on Food 52 awhile back. This is mayo you are making from scratch, people, and it’s not as scary and intimidating as you might think, at all! But it’s just the thing to elevate these Heirloom Tomato BLT sandwiches into something spectacular and noteworthy.
Side note- you would be well advised to serve any and all brown butter mayo that is not reserved for sandwich purposes as a dipping option for artichokes. Think about it- when it comes to artichokes, some people are butter people and some people are mayo people. This magical condiment appeals to everyone!
Anyway back to these Heirloom Tomato BLT sammies- I’ve been waiting since last year for heirloom tomatoes to come back into season so that I could share this recipe with you. For the recipe pictured I used gluten free bread and some leftover turkey bacon I had from a cooking job. I try not to eat much animal protein these days and will usually opt for plant-based options instead, but if I have leftover ingredients from a job I don’t let them go to waste. My point is that you can make this sandwich as indulgent as you want, or lighten it up a bit. Make it a BLTA and add avocado. But DO NOT skip the brown butter mayo. And the heirloom tomatoes, if they’re in season, are everything.
In other news- I just picked up three 3 week old kittens from the shelter that we’re going to foster until they’re ready for adoption! They are SO SO cute and tiny- they’ve barely just opened their eyes! Right now they’re mewing at me incessantly (because they can’t meow yet- they mew), so it must be feeding time again. Make sure you’re following me on Instagram for lots of baby kitty action over the next several weeks…if you’re into that.
- For the Brown Butter Mayonnaise:
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon cold water
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
- For the BLT:
- 2 slices bread, gluten free or regular
- 2 slices pork or turkey bacon, halved
- 2-3 thick slices heirloom tomato
- Little Gem or romaine lettuce
- To make brown butter: In a small skillet or saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter completely; cook until it turns brown and smells nutty, about 4 to 6 minutes. Be sure to stir frequently, scraping up any bits from the bottom so they don't burn. Take the pan off heat and transfer the brown butter to a glass measuring cup with a spout. Let cool to just above room temperature. To make mayonnaise: Combine egg yolk, lemon juice, cold water, and salt in a medium mixing bowl. Whisk until well integrated and bright yellow, about 30 seconds. Whisking constantly, add about half of the brown butter to yolk mixture, a few small drops at a time, over the span of about 4 minutes. Resist the urge to add the brown butter too quickly; you want a nice emulsion to form. Gradually add remaining brown butter in a very slow, thin stream, whisking constantly, until mayonnaise is thick and spreadable, about 4 additional minutes. Taste for seasoning and balance.
- Toast bread and spread one slice (or both slices) evenly with brown butter mayonnaise.
- Layer bacon, tomato and lettuce over bread slice and top with the second slice.