Pastrami and Gherkin Open-Faced Sandwich

I recently was given a new cook book from my brother for Christmas, and it is pretty amazing! Now, I’m not one to follow a recipe to a “t” just because I’m picky and think my way is better (big shocker haha). But so far, I have made very few changes to the recipes I’ve tried because they are that good and only needed to change because i needed to substitute for what I have on hand, not constantly buy something like 6 different kinds of mustard. If I had my choice, unlimited income, and extra refrigerator/cabinet space- I would most certainly have over 6 different mustards. Back to my point of this post: this awesome, somewhat edited recipe of an open-face sandwich called the Pastrami and Gherkin.
This is a great, quick, snappy lunch and will leave you with no reason for having to skip lunch or pick up something covered in grease and fat.

You will need the following ingredients for two open-face sandwiches:
– One bagel THIN – i used plain but feel free to use poppyseed or everything flavor
– 2 oz of neufchâtel cheese or low/non-fat cream cheese
– a good glob (little over a tablespoon) of grainy or dijon mustard
– salt and pepper
– 4 slices of thin sliced pastrami
– 1 large handful of arugula leaves (or even a mix lettuce as long as it has arugula in it)
– enough slices of gherkin pickles to at least make a ring around the top of the bagels (i used four slices for each)

To prepare:
– Toast the bagel thin
– combine the cheese and mustard so it becomes one spread
– once the bagel is done toasting, spread no more than 1 oz of the mustard and cheese mixture onto each half of the bagel thin
– sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste
– then arrange the gherkin pickles slices on top of the mustard and cheese mixture – add as little or as much as you want of the pickles
–  place half of the arugula onto each half
– delicately drape two slices of pastrami onto each half of the open-face sandwich
– dig in! just don’t bite your fingers off in the process of trying to not inhale this awesome meal!

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Tips and reasons for specific ingredients:

– using a bagel thin is important to help cut the carbs a regular bagel has. The thin is half or less of the size of a normal bagel but still the same great taste!
– Neufchatel cheese has less fat than regular cream cheese and personally, I think it tastes better than cream cheese – the regular kind and the reduced fat kind.
– when you get thin slices of pastrami, it lays nicer over the sandwich rather than bulky pieces and easier to bite into. also, you don’t need to put so much meat on when you can get the same great taste with thinner slices and less calories/fat. the whole point of making your own meals, you don’t need to over-do it. Other factors of the sandwich will bring out more flavors and still fill you up, not a ton of meat.
– and yes, draping the meat over the sandwich tastes much better than stacking or folding it (haha, just a visual thing which food always tastes better when it looks more appealing and isn’t grouped onto one section of the sandwich)
– if you are like me and not a fan of pickles on your sandwich, you have to get over it at least with this meal. trust me.
– You might notice in the picture, there isn’t just arugula lettuce- I didn’t want to buy a giant box for a few sandwiches so I got a combo bag of arugula and spinach so I can get more uses out of my groceries. But I am adamant on using arugula because it adds extra flavor, almost a peppery taste, unlike something like iceberg or romaine lettuce which would just be a filler.

Enjoy everyone and please be sure to comment below on what you think of this recipe and your results if you try this recipe out! Stay tuned for more recipes and meals coming soon.

-Katie Florina

 

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