Rep Note:
Obvious?
8 March 2019

¶ It seems so obvious in retrospect that I’m somewhat embarrassed by writing it down. Remembering how much thought I gave to it ahead of time, I wonder if the simplicity isn’t a mirage.

I’m talking about today’s lunch — and simple lunch at that. Evidently, though, I had to clear away a lot of lumber to see what I wanted. My weakness for bacon was one of the more unwieldy items.

Should I go back in time, and tell you about a weekend treat that my mother used to make? She called it “cheese dreams.” It was a grilled open-faced sandwich, with bacon, cheese, and tomato on a slice of bread. That’s the idea. But it’s not enough to go on for a re-creation. For one thing, I can’t remember how these ingredients were layered. For another, the bacon, which wasn’t cooked separately, was always almost grossly underdone. 

What I did today — having, as I say, worked out the details in advance — was to take a medium length of baguette, slice it in half horizontally, and spread the pieces with butter and mustard. I topped them with thin slices of Prague ham and with heaping spoonfuls of grated gruyère. Then I broiled them in a very hot oven, for about a minute and a half. The result was something between a croque monsieur and a cocktail hors d’oeuvre. Altogether scrumptious. 

And very, how you say, obvious. You’ve probably been enjoying this for years. 

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