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Friday
Feb292008

Well-Bread: A Daring Bakers Challenge, and Seriously Sweet Sandwich Mischief

 

Sandwich Project

Breadmaking is an all-consuming process, both physically--and, in our opinion, emotionally as well. It involves patience (let the dough rise!), attention (is that yeast proofed?), proximity (don't let it rise in drafty spaces !) and yes, even a little tough love (punch the dough!). But when all is said and done, it's worth the effort: one needs only to take a hot, fresh loaf out of the oven and taste a piece, heated as though from within, upon which butter will melt like a fading apparition, to see why breadmakers are so dedicated to their art. The sense of accomplishment a baker feels upon completing successful loaves is simply incomparable--this much much we can attest to, having completed this month's Daring Baker's challenge (Julia Child's French Bread Recipe, suggested by Breadchick Mary and I Like To Cook's Sara).



However, if you're at all like the Cakespy crew, this moment can be short-lived, quickly giving way to thoughts like "How can we turn this bread into a dessert?". After all, the breadmaking process does work up an appetite. But what to make? Bread Pudding? French Toast (or, if you're feeling fancy, pain perdu)?While both are sweet choices indeed, after the physical work of making the bread, both just sounded so...hard. It was then that the answer came to us: why not fry up some sweet sandwiches? Quickly we assembled a grouping of sweet fillings and fried up our loaf, grilled-cheese style, in a griddle; here's how it all came out:


Cake Frosting SandwichCake Frosting Sandwich
Frosting Sandwich: Our first experiment was a cake frosting sandwich. It seemed like a pretty safe bet; after all, bread with butter never fails to satisfy, and this is pretty much sweet butter, right? So we buttered up two slices and spread a thick frosting smear (pink, of course) in-between. The end result was a little runny, but was extremely delicious--the pinch of salt in the bread added a perfect complement to the sweet, creamy frosting. This one could be habit-inducing.


Cookie DoughSandwich Project
Cookie Dough Sandwich: When Atkins Dieters have nightmares, they probably look like this: a soft, rich spoonful of warmed cookie dough sandwiched between freshly baked bread slices, lightly buttered and fried. The resulting combination is a study in sinfulness: carbohydratey, slightly salty, rich, and sweet--all at once. As you might imagine though, moderation is key with this sandwich: a little goes a long way.


<span class=Sandwich
Couverture and Coconut Sandwich: This combination was dreamed up in the grocery store, where these two toppings were sold next to one another in the bulk aisle. It turned out to be a serendipitous pairing indeed--the coconut, which was not sweetened, added the slightest crunch to the velvety melted couverture (not tempered--eek!), as well as offering a nice contrast to the extreme sweetness. As noted above though...small bites of this rich little guy.


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Melty Mint Sandwich: Ah, melty mints, is there a cuter thing in the world than thee? It's impossible to not smile when greeted with this chocolate-chip sized version of nonpareils. But does all of this cuteness mean a tasty sweetwich? As we discovered, the heated chips (which retained their shape for the most part during the frying, protected by the bread) made soft explosions as they melted in your mouth, and the sprinkles added a delightful texture to the mix: pleasuretown, ahoy.



Sandwich ProjectSandwich Project
Tofu Cream cheese, sweet coconut and pear sandwich: Thrown together with what was left in our kitchen, this combination was dense, rich, and lending to the toffutti cream cheese, a bit savory--and overall, deeply satisfying. Though it might have tasted even better on a slightly saltier bread to balance out the sweetness of the coconut (which we'd sugared for this version), all in all, we'd add this one to our lunch box. Vegan, to boot--we even used butter substitute for the frying!

So, adventure over, what have we learned?

The hardest part of this experiment was actually getting past the mental block that sandwiches ought to be savory; there was a certain part of the whole "sweet sandwich" concept that was hard to wrap the mind around. But really, most of the experiments were quite good: the sweet fillings were balanced by the texture and taste of the bread, lending an element of surprise and newness to both elements. Does this mean that fast-food joints ought to consider changing format? Well, perhaps not; in their extreme richness and sweetness, these sweetwiches are probably not a main-ticket item. But as an add-on or impulse item? Well, let's just say that when you start seeing the mini dessert-sandwich revolution picking up speed in chains across the country, remember where you saw it first.


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Reader Comments (104)

I love Nutella on French bread but you've taken that to a whole new level! The cookie dough sandwich. Oh man! I salivate just thinking of that.

Your blog is my new favorite! And truly, this is saying something, as I have spent the last few days reading all the DB blogs from Z backwards. So unless I hit something more interesting in B or A, you get the prize. :)

March 2 | Unregistered CommenterJenny

I love the colors of the melty mints, that's a fabulous image! Not only are you a daring baker, but a daring sandwich maker too! ;-)

March 2 | Unregistered Commentermari

NEVER have I seen such creative uses for bread. I love the melty mints...now I'm craving a melty mint sandwich of my own.
Thanks for the giggles.

March 2 | Unregistered CommenterLesley

My sister says there's about as much sugar in jam as in frosting, so she keeps frosting in her fridge for her kids to make peanut butter and frosting sandwiches. So, you're not alone in your thinking here.

You have done a great job with the bread, I love how you've pinked it up =) and those chips are just so cute! Well done.

March 3 | Unregistered CommenterKelly-Jane

What better than a cookie dough sandwich. That bread looks so good and the fillings are truly creative!

March 3 | Unregistered CommenterTina

Wow, ok that looks fucking delicious.

like so many have said, great job on this month's challenge, and I love that you've taken the sweet route for the french bread!

March 3 | Unregistered CommenterMandy

Looks like some of the concoctions I used to get in trouble for as a kid. Yummy Yummy
(uh, minus the cream cheese tofu)

Those look amaziiiiiinnngggg!!! Especially the cookie dough sandwich, and I absolutely LOVE the little melty mints too. I always snag some when I'm in the bulk food isle! :o)

March 3 | Unregistered CommenterAlison Nicole

ohmygod ohmygod. and i thought i was being creative by eating mine with nutella! this is above and beyond delicious -- i obviously need to lose five pounds, and then go an entirely frosting-and-french-bread-sandwich diet to gain it all back. :-)

March 3 | Unregistered CommenterKaty

Best post ever! "When Atkins dieters have nightmares" haha! ;D Your sammys are ridiculous and gorgeous and someone (you?) is surely going to turn this idea into a business within the year.

In Holland we eat LOTS of sweet stuff on our bread! Every supermarket has a whole isle full of sweet bread toppings! :D

March 4 | Unregistered CommenterTizzalicious

Wandering chopsticks: Thanks! But true...nutella on bread is divine!

Jenny: You're too sweet! If you were here right now I'd give you a sweetwich to seal that deal! :-)

Mari: Thanks, what a great title: "Baker...mover and shaker...daring sandwich maker"

Lesley: No problem! Hope you'll try one! :-)

Lynn: You know, that is a good point! Depending on the jam, there probably is as much sugar!

Kelly-Jane: Well, pink is the happiest frosting color! Thank you for the kind words!

Tina: Thank you, it was a lot of fun to do!

Chelsea: YES!!!!!!!!!!

Mandy: Thank you, thank you! We always like to take the sweet route.

Jaimee: Ha! Being honest about the healthy stuff. I'm down.

Alison Nicole: Don't I know it! The candy section of the bulk aisle is just bulging with sweet treats begging to be tried out.

Katy: Now there's an idea! Thanks!

Textual Bulldog: Ha! Glad you liked that part. Who knows about the future? :-)

Tizzalicious: See, they're on to the trend before me! :-)

March 4 | Unregistered CommenterCakespy

These are a-m-a-z-i-n-g! I don't think my hips can take the experimenting but if I ever want to gain a good three pounds, I'm going to try the frosting and the cookie dough options. They look delish!

March 4 | Unregistered CommenterAnne-Marie

Oooh, girly. I love the Melty Mint Sandwich. That is such a cute idea! Mmmm, your bread looks great, too. Makes me want to run out to Albertson's and buy some (you didn't think I was gonna make it, did you?? ha ha!). I just joined DB and I can't wait for my 1st challenge!

March 4 | Unregistered CommenterMarq

I need to eat that cookie dough sandwich...now!

Haha, that was the most original take on this challenge I have seen! I really enjoyed seeing the cookie dough sandwich and right now, at 0200, I would love to bite into a sandwich of baguettes and soft, sweet, melt-in-your-mouth cookie dough!

What does Tofutti taste like? Does it have the tanginess that cream cheese has?

Oh, lovely bread, by the way. ^.^

http://www.blogger.com/profile/11540351035366591645

March 5 | Unregistered CommenterChristina

Lovely! I would personally take the frosting sandwich right now...

March 6 | Unregistered CommenterMallow

This is just genius! I love the pink frosting and cookie dough sandwiches! Everything looks heavenly though :)

March 7 | Unregistered Commenterjoey

Anne-Marie: Oh they were. ;-)

Marq: Melty mints are so happy, aren't they?

Jamie: We all hope you did!

Christina: Tofutti is good, but it is different than cream cheese. Personally, though I am not a vegetarian or vegan, I prefer it to cream cheese itself, it seems a bit smoother and doesn't coat the mouth as much. It is good!

Mallow: We could all go for another one here too!

Joey: Thanks! It was!

March 8 | Unregistered CommenterCakespy

My favourite sweet sandwich uses two Reese's Peanut Butter Cups melted between toasted bread. I freeze the sandwich after melting the peanut butter cups. It is amazing!

March 9 | Unregistered CommenterJustin

i commend you for your courage! how bold of you to replace savory fillings with sweetness.

i could eat a million melty mints (in one sitting), and the thought of them squished between two slabs of crusty bread makes my heart sing...and my mouth drool. :)

March 9 | Unregistered CommenterA. Grace

Justin: That sounds like heaven!

A. Grace: Thanks! It did take some bravery :-) And aren't those melty mints just...heavenly? xoxo

March 9 | Unregistered CommenterCakespy
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