Welcome back to another day of Vegan Mofo 2015. Best sandwich ever? Ar you kidding me? I don’t have best sandwich recipe ever, but I have a best sandwiches ever book. Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day came out three years ago and I still use it on a regular basis. It’s been a life saver during this crazy hot summer, even though many recipes call for baking or frying something. But it’s easy to make a lot of things in advance and have them handy once you get super hungry and don’t feel like preparing an elaborate meal.
The following recipe for Marinated Eggplant Sandwiches shares the title “Best Sandwich Ever” with several other recipes in this book by Celine Steen and Tamasin Noyes and it has been on our plates several times since the book came out. I love that there are two different marinades, which are also very flexible. Instead of Cajun spice mix I have used curry or berbere. Both the tofu and the eggplant slices make a lot. I usually store them in the fridge and use them as sides for other dishes as well. (If you cut the tofu into slices thinner than 1/4 inch.)
P.S. When I am in a hurry, I also just use single components of these Marinated Eggplant Sandwiches. Both the tofu and the eggplants make great side dishes. You can marinate them in advance or you can prepare them and store them in the fridge to reheat.
To make the marinated eggplant: Preheat the broiler to 450°F (230°C, or gas mark 8).
Place the eggplant on one or two large baking sheets.
In a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of the olive oil with the vinegar and Cajun spice mix.
Lightly brush this mixture on both sides of the eggplant slices.
Broil for 4 minutes on each side, or until dark brown.
In the meantime, in another small bowl, combine the remaining 2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil with the Worcestershire sauce and liquid smoke.
Carefully remove the baking sheet from the oven.
Brush both sides of the eggplant slices with the Worcestershire mixture and let them cool on a wire rack.
Let stand for at least 30 minutes before serving, or even better, up to overnight.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
To get the best out of the flavors, bring back to room temperature before serving.
To make the tofu: Combine the vinegar, oil, nutritional yeast, onion powder, garlic, salt, and pepper in a large rectangular shallow dish.
Add the tofu and turn to coat thoroughly; let marinate for 30 minutes.
Decrease the oven temperature to 425°F (220°C, or gas mark 7).
Bake the tofu for 30 minutes, flipping once halfway through. Note that the tofu will become chewier once cooled.
To assemble the sandwiches: Spread 1 tablespoon (14 g) mayonnaise on each side of the roll.
Place 1/3 cup (24 g) shredded lettuce on top.
Place 1 tofu slice on each sandwich and place 4 to 6 slices marinated eggplant on top.
Recipe from Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day by Celine Steen and Tamasin Noyes. Fair Winds Press 2012. Recipe published with kind permission from the author Celine Steen.