beka stays healthy : apple, cheddar, and arugula sandwiches with berry dijon dressing (whew)

I think these sandwiches take longer to say than they do to make.

But first, a little back story:

When I graduated from college and learned to cook for myself, I started getting crazy in the kitchen. WAY crazier than I ever had before. I mean, I mixed two different kinds of cereal…in the same bowl! I purchased plain yogurt…and put my own fruit on top! And, weirdest of all, I put apples…in a sandwich!

Stranger things had not happened.

When I first started making this I used to whip it up in a very standard and unremarkable way: apples, cheddar, soft tortilla, folded in half and grilled. Good, but not great.

A few years later, now that I’m no longer bewildered by the phenomenon of sandwiches outside of the PB&J variety, I think it’s become great. (Really, really great. Seriously. I had two of these today.)

Here’s what you’ll need:

Sanwich:

  • 1 whole Multi Grain Sandwich Thin
  • ¼ Apple, Sliced Thin
  • 1 ounce White Cheddar Cheese
  • ½ cup Arugula

Dressing:

  • 1 Tablespoon Whole Grain Dijon Mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Smucker’s Triple Berry Preserves

And here’s the how-to:

Start with the dressing. Combine dijon and berry preserves in a small bowl. Mix well.

Next, add equal portions of the dressing to the inside of each side of a multi grain sandwich thin. Then add apple slices, cheddar, and arugula to one side of the thin and top with the remaining side.

Once the sandwich is made, spray a grill pan with a light mist of cooking spray. Turn the heat to medium-low. Add the sandwich to the pan and place a heavy object (such as a flat-bottomed bowl or plate) on top of the sandwich. The weight will press the ingredients down so that they are evenly heated and will also grill the bread nicely. Grill for about 2-3 minutes per side, or until the cheese is completely melted and the bread is golden brown.

Allow to cool for a minute before serving. Then, dig in! Fast and healthy and full of fall goodness.

Much better than PB&J (on most days – but some days, PB&J is still where it’s at).

(You can also find this recipe here at Tasty Kitchen!)

the dailies : 9.17.11

daily word: I love the way the Message explains God’s new covenant through Christ in Hebrews 8:

This new plan I’m making with Israel
isn’t going to be written on paper,
isn’t going to be chiseled in stone;
This time I’m writing out the plan in them,
carving it on the lining of their hearts.
I’ll be their God,
they’ll be my people.
They won’t go to school to learn about me,
or buy a book called God in Five Easy Lessons.
They’ll all get to know me firsthand,
the little and the big, the small and the great.
They’ll get to know me by being kindly forgiven,
with the slate of their sins forever wiped clean.
By coming up with a new plan, a new covenant between God and his people, God put the old plan on the shelf. And there it stays, gathering dust.

daily sweat: No sweat today! I was away for the day celebrating a very important birthday.

This is Erin, and she and I have been the best of friends since high school. Today we ventured out into the middle of the state to meet halfway and celebrate her birthday!

And since no good birthday is complete without good food…the daily dish was quite full:

breakfast:

That right there? Diner food. I love diner food, especially breakfasts, and most especially when those breakfasts include chocolate chip pancakes. Our waitress was a new employee and wasn’t familiar with the goodness that is chocolate chip pancakes, so when I asked for them she followed with, “So, you’d like pancakes with chocolate chips on top?” And I explained that usually the chips are mixed into the batter, but I’d take them in any form. Which apparently she took literally since I got chips mixed into the batter and chips on top AND chocolate syrup to boot.

It was as good as it sounds/looks.

lunch:

We were so full from breakfast that lunch just kind of came and went, but we did stop by a small fruit stand and both got an apple. We also made an appearance at Gertrude Hawk, where Erin recommended the Pumpkin Pie Smidgens, which is quite possibly the best thing she’s ever done in our decade of friendship. They’re that good. I now have a new favorite fall food group. Seriously…you all need to high tail it to a Gertrude Hawk asap, either online or in person, and order 18 boxes of these immediately if not sooner.

dinner:

It started healthy…

(field greens with goat cheese and walnuts)

and ended classically…

(fried things.)

I wholeheartedly believe that sometimes, the healthiest thing you can do is eat a plate of fried food and laugh with a friend. The two go so well together.

Especially when paired with Pumpkin Pie Smidgens for dessert.

daily mile:

Day 13: jam-filled vs. jam-packed

Other miscellaneous anecdotes that I feel compelled to include:

  • The Pumpkin Caramel Latte pocket hand sanitizer from Bath and Body works is definitely the best smelling antibacterial product ever made. I use it even when my hands are clean, just so I can smell it. I wish I was kidding. I also wish they made it in shower gel/lotion form.
  • The Lion King in 3D is not just for kids. Or maybe it is, but either way, I thoroughly enjoyed it.
  • I also thoroughly enjoyed having my first real straight-from-the-local-orchard apple of the season. Smidgens notwithstanding, it was my favorite food of the day!
  • Is anyone familiar with Utica? And if so, can you please explain why the roadways there are so complicated? Highways that are not clearly identified and one ways and almost-but-not-really one ways and pot holes so gigantic they could house a person? Someone…please enlighten me. What’s the deal, Utica?!
  • Tomorrow, I’m going to make these again. Feel free to swing by for a sample or 5 so I don’t eat them all by myself over the course of 24 hours.