Bacon Almond & Date (B.A.D.) Sandwich

For each sandwich you will need:

2 slices bread
Date-Almond Spread (recipe below)
Goat cheese, softened
Bacon slices, cooked crisp
Olive oil

Crumble goat cheese over one side of a slice of bread. Try to gently spread it over the bread with the back of a teaspoon. Sprinkle some goat cheese over one side of remaining slice of bread. Spread with a layer of almond-date spread. Arrange slices of crispy-fried bacon over the spread. Pack a generous amount of baby arugula over the bacon. Lay remaining slice of bread over the arugula, cheese side down. Brush olive oil over the top of sandwich. Place the sandwich, oil side down, in a preheated heavy skillet, cast-iron pan or a hot griddle. Brush the top of sandwich with olive oil. When sandwich is brown, flip with metal spatula. Or, grill the sandwich in your panini press. When sandwich is golden, remove from pan. Cut sandwich in half and serve warm.

Tip from the cook


I make my own panini press by weighting down the sandwich as it cooks in my grill pan with a heavy cast iron pan.


Date-Almond Spread

1/2 cup raw almonds, toasted
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
8 ounces pitted dates, chopped
1/2 cup port
1/4 cup water
1 (2-inch) strip orange zest
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper

Put toasted almonds in work bowl of food processor. Pulse until nuts are finely ground.

In small heavy saucepan, heat oil over medium-low heat. Add shallot and garlic. Sauté for 1 to 2 minutes or until tender. Add ginger, dates, port and zest; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer for 20 to 25 minutes or until port is a syrupy consistency and dates are softened, stirring occasionally. Add water as it cooks. Remove and discard zest. Let mixture cool slightly, then transfer to food processor containing ground almonds; process all together until smooth. Transfer to small bowl. Stir in vinegar. Add salt and pepper to taste. Let cool. (Make ahead: Cover tightly and refrigerate for up to 2 days.)


- Recipe courtesy of Sue Doeden