Easy Warm-Weather Lunch: How To Make The Perfect BLT

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Nothing tastes more like summer.

I love tomatoes so much. Like...when I was a kid, I'd walk around biting into whole tomatoes like they were apples. And tomatoes are at their prime in the summer...they taste like warm sunshine. Ahhhh...

If biting into a tomato whole isn't your thing, then a good old fashioned BLT is the best way to enjoy a delicious, juicy, ripe, summertime tomato.

Ingredients:

  • 8 slices white bread (you can go fresh bakery bread, but plain ol' Wonder Bread is classic)
  • 1 pound thick-cut, good quality bacon (if you're feeling bold, go to your meat counter and have them cut you some of the good stuff)
  • 3 large tomatoes (heirloom is best)
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise* or "salad dressing"**
  • 8 large pieces of iceberg lettuce (soft lettuce just won't do)

*Okay, so in NC, Duke's mayo is a big thing. It's practically a religion. That's all I can, in good conscious, recommend.

**But there's a big divide in my house. My mom and my brother: Duke's mayo and only Duke's. My dad and me: Miracle Whip or, if you're from Tennessee (like my dad), "salad dressing." I think I would faint if I had a BLT with mayo. I crave the sweetness of Miracle Whip and refuse to have it any other way. So you do you. Whatever you prefer is what will make you BLT experience magical.

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Arrange bacon strips in a single layer on a foil-lined sheet tray. Bake until crispy, ~15 minutes.
  2. Slice tomatoes, ~1/4 inch thick. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
  3. Toast bread to desired crispiness. I like mine lightly toasty, so the bread is still light and springy.
  4. Once the bacon is finished, transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain some of the grease.
  5. Assemble with a generous spread of mayo or "salad dressing", then layer with lettuce, tomato in the middle, and end with bacon. Spread another generous layer of your condiment-of-choice on the top slice of bread and top it all off.
  6. Cut diagonally and enjoy in triangles. Because that's the only way to do it.

Add A Little Variety

While I'm a purest and think a BLT is damn fine the way it is...some of you need more. No harm, no foul, but just promise me you'll try it classic-style at least once. Here are some of the best toppings for your BLT:

  • Fried egg (the runnier the yolk, the better)
  • Avocado/Guacamole (cause duh)
  • Roasted red peppers
  • Pimento cheese
  • Fried green tomatoes (not for the faint of heart)
  • Thinly sliced red onion
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Yes. It. Is.

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