8 & $20 Recipe: Summertime B.L.T. and Pinot Noir

Homemade mayo elevates classic diner fare to a special occasion
Aug 9, 2011

Eight ingredients. That's all it takes to make an entire meal from scratch. Add in a good bottle of wine for less than $20, and you've got a weeknight feast for family or friends. That's the philosophy behind our "8 & $20" feature. We hope it adds pleasure to your table.

Sometimes cooking well isn't so much about how you transform the ingredients, but rather how well you piece together what's in your shopping cart. Like many sandwiches, the key to the classic B.L.T. lies in bringing together the best ingredients, mixing contrasting flavors and textures. Find a good tomato, some well-made bacon and a solid loaf of bread and you’re basically rounding third and heading for home. For extra panache, however, consider the little luxury of homemade mayo.

There are many good and valid reasons to use the store-bought version (as a shortcut in a more complicated recipe, for example), but here, when you can basically get the mayo whipped up and ready to go while the bacon is cooking, is a good time to double down. Homemade mayo’s looser, more velvety texture will add another dimension to your sandwich.

A dry sparkling rosé makes an excellent match here—all bubbles and acidity to cut through the fat of the bacon and mayo. But among the still wines we tried with this dish, a Pinot Noir from Argentina came out on top, with its spicy wood notes and enough presence to sail through the smoky sweet cloud of bacon.

Classic B.L.T. with Homemade Mayo


Pair with: Trapiche Pinot Noir Mendoza Oak Cask 2010 (85 points, $10)


Total Time: 20 minutes

Approximate Food Cost: $31

  • 8 slices bacon
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 round loaf sourdough bread, cut into slices
  • 2 large heirloom tomatoes, sliced
  • 4 leaves red leaf lettuce

1. In a large skillet, cook the slices of bacon over medium-high heat until lightly browned and almost crisp. Remove to a plate covered with a paper towel and reserve the bacon fat.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolk and the mustard together. Slowly drizzle the oil into the mixture while whisking continuously until the oil is incorporated and the mayonnaise has formed. Whisk in a pinch of salt and the lemon juice.

3. Heat one tablespoon of the bacon fat in the skillet and toast the bread over medium-high heat, adding more fat as needed.

4. To assemble the sandwiches, spread the mayo over both inner sides of the bread, add a layer of sliced tomatoes seasoned with salt, two slices of bacon and lettuce. Serve immediately. Serves 4.

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