Saturday, August 21, 2010

Bait and Switch

DP and I are planning to move out of our place and into a (hopefully) larger, cheaper apartment in a little over a month. We are currently in the middle of navigating Brooklyn real estate, which has fortunately gotten a lot more reasonable in the last couple of years. Three years ago, looking for an apartment was horrifying. We laughed, we cried, we fought, and then we found ourselves in a beautiful little gem for exactly the right price. It's remembering that the gem is out there that is difficult.

No matter what the state of the market is, real estate agents love the "bait and switch." It's something I had forgotten about in the intervening years, but when we started the search all of the memories came flooding back. Here's how it goes (as I'm sure most people know): you find an apartment, perhaps on craigslist, that looks great. It is large, lots of light, nicely maintained, and the right price (all of which you can't totally tell from an ad, but you get an idea). You call to set up an appointment to see it, and one of two things happens. Either the agent is upfront with you and says that actually, that apartment is [no longer available, not showing yet, being converted into a yoga studio] but how about we show you this other apartment in the [wrong neighborhood/price range/move in date]. Or you show up for the appointment and the same thing happens. Or you show up and the apartment is in a "slightly" different location than you were told. Or, occasionally, it is exactly as represented. That's what we are looking for, and hopeful we will be able to find in the next couple of weeks. Hopefully sans tears/fights/frustration.

Today, after a full morning of appointments, we came home for brunch. There, I performed a little bait and switch of my own. I took a normal, healthy ingredient (heirloom tomatoes), and fried it. Then I served it up with bacon and arugula for a delicious sandwich that screamed of summer. It was a welcome break from the detox diet--although with the light batter and whole grain bread I might have a second batch tomorrow!

Fried Green Tomato BLT
from Food and Wine

4 slices bacon
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 pound unripe green tomatoes, cut into 1/2 inch slices (I used green zebra heirloom tomatoes)
canola oil
8 slices whole wheat/multigrain bread, toasted
mayonnaise (I used canola oil mayo)

Preheat oven to 400F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil, bake bacon on sheet until crisp, or 15 minutes. Drain the bacon and cut in half.

Put the flour, cornmeal, and egg in three separate shallow bowls. Season the cornmeal with salt and pepper. Dredge the tomato slices in flour, egg, and then cornmeal, tapping to remove excess.

In a large skillet, heat 1/4 inch canola oil until shimmery (or water sizzles when flicked in pan). Add tomatoes and cook until golden brown, around 5 minutes, turning once (it took me longer than 5 minutes to cook them until crisp). Drain tomatoes on paper towels.

Spread the toast with a thin layer of mayo. Layer with arugula, 2 halves of bacon, and tomatoes. Serve and enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. My favorite apartment hunting story was the dude who wouldn't tell me exactly where the apartment was but instead wanted to meet me on some random corner in Brooklyn. Um, yeah no... The sandwich looks yummy! I'm gonna have to try it.