The BLT is one of life's most perfect sandwiches, and there is no better time to enjoy one than the height of summer when tomatoes are at their peak. The combination of perfectly crisp bacon, bright and juicy tomato slices, fresh lettuce, mayo and good bread is the epitome of letting simple yet good quality ingredients shine. But if you're looking to upgrade your BLT game, we've got one word for you: lobster.
Is there anything that lobster doesn't take to the next level? From lobster mac and cheese to lobster omelets, and from lobster quesadilla to lobster avocado toast, the luxurious shellfish is able to take any dish from humble to sumptuous. Pair it with bacon and you've got a transcendent experience.
A BLT sandwich barely needs a recipe. How to make a BLT can be as simple as putting cooked bacon, tomato slices and pieces of lettuce between two pieces of mayo-slathered bread. But for the best BLT, a little care goes a long way.
It all starts with the best ingredients. Since the sandwich relies on just a few components, making sure each is high quality is the easiest way to make your BLT shine. If you use thick cut bacon from the butcher shop or farmers market, rather than the packaged supermarket stuff, you'll immediately notice a difference. Super fresh lettuce, especially a nice Boston bibb, is the perfect complement.
Then there's the tomato. Arguably the star of the BLT, there's a big difference between a mealy, out-of-season grocery store tomato and a perfectly ripe, in-season heirloom or beefsteak. Try to find the latter for a truly memorable sandwich.
The best bread for a BLT is ideally a high quality, fresh-baked sourdough or pullman loaf. And if you really want to go all out, there is no going wrong when you make your own mayonnaise.
Once you've got the basic BLT recipe down, you can have fun with different variations, like this one with freshly made lobster salad.
It all starts by mixing good-quality mayo (storebought or homemade) with lemo zest, lemon juice and chopped fresh tarragon. Some of that is spread on sourdough bread, while the rest is mixed with cooked lobster meat and chopped green onion. You can either buy store-bought prepared lobster meat, cook your own lobster tail, or use leftovers.
Then all you have to do is layer the bread with lettuce, lobster salad, crumbled bacon and tomato slices. Ready in just 20 minutes, it's one of the absolute best sandwiches perfect for summer.
This recipe is adapted from "Soup Nights" (Rizzoli) by Betty Rosbottom and was published in The Chicago Tribune.
Step 1: In a medium bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup mayonnaise, 2 teaspoons lemon juice, 1 teaspoon lemon zest and 1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon.
Step 2: Use 3 to 4 teaspoons of this mixture to spread thinly on one side of each of the 4 toasted bread slices.
Step 3: Add 6 ounces cooked, chopped lobster meat and 1 chopped green onion to the remaining mayonnaise mixture; mix well.
Step 4: Place a lettuce leaf on each of 2 bread slices. Mound half of the lobster salad atop each leaf; sprinkle with crumbled bacon. Top each sandwich with 2 to 3 tomato slices; salt and pepper them well.
Step 5: Cover sandwiches with remaining bread slices, mayo sides down. Halve sandwiches and serve.
Note: One pound of lobster will yield 3 to 4 ounces cooked meat. Some fish markets and grocery stores sell cooked lobster meat. If you purchase frozen cooked lobster, defrost in the refrigerator overnight, and pat it dry with paper towels.