To be honest, I am looking forward to the last week of the A to Z April Blog Challenge. Don’t get me wrong; I am challenged and inspired to create more brilliant ideas this month than the entire past year of my blog. That said this month, especially last two weeks; I have attended social events probably 3-4 times a week. It hasn’t left me any time to play around in my kitchen, let alone catch up on my writing. I am though proud of myself for diligently keeping up with the pace of A to Z challenge. Some days have been easier than others as I managed to squeeze two to three photo shoots in one day. Let me tell you, it’s not easy trying to create a dish from scratch, have your props styled, waiting for the right time of the day to take the perfect shot. Oh my! After all I am a mere cook, not a photographer. Enough whining, let’s focus on today’s theme.
Now the letter T has a few options, since I am Indian at heart, needless to say Tea was the natural choice for today’s theme. My family in India is extremely fastidious about their tea consumption: time of the day, type of tea leaf, serving cups, water temperature, sugar and milk, heck even where to consume the cup of tea generates passionate and at times heated discussion. Of course since being practiced connoisseurs, over the years our schedule has been perfected. Each one of us has our personal preference of how we like our tea. One drop of milk less or a pinch of sugar extra, the tea will be dunked. Like I mentioned, we are tea fanatics.
With superb quality tea so readily available in these modern times, I have had the pleasure of tasting a wide assortment of South East Asian and English Tea too. Depending on the time of day or what tidbits are being served, I will choose from the assorted variety I stock at home. One of my fondest memories revolving around tea was the Afternoon Tea hosted by The Plaza Hotel in NYC with expansive and magnificent view of Central Park. Premium loose tea selection, dainty finger sandwiches, delicate cakes and scones served at the spectacular Palm Court was the finest hallmark of luxury and indulgence.
Seeking inspiration from my nostalgic days of NYC, I made cucumber tea sandwiches. Mind you, these are not your average cucumber sandwiches; truffled goat cheese filling, watercress, paper-thin slices of radish and cucumber encased in freshly baked bread, it is the ideal indulgent tea sandwich, at least in my kitchen.
Truffled Goat Cheese, Watercress, and Cucumber Sandwiches
I love goat cheese, truffles, and watercress. Combining them in one dish is pure brilliant. So simple to make yet extremely lavish. These dainty sandwiches might appear plain but they pack in a punch with bold flavors of truffle oil and watercress.
- 12 ounces soft fresh goat cheese
- 1 cup watercress
- 1 teaspoon truffle oil
- Very thin white or brown bread
- 1 bunch radishes, very thinly sliced
- 1 English hothouse cucumber, peeled, thinly sliced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Blend watercress, goat cheese, and truffle oil in a processor till combined.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Place bread slices on a work surface. Evenly spread each slice with the goat cheese mixture.
- Top bread slices with cucumber and radish slices. Sprinkle black pepper.
- Tom with remaining bread slices with cheese side down.
- Trim the crust and cut into desired shape.