Pizza Today - November 2017 - 40

O

pen-faced sandwiches can bring
a whole new
level of sophistication to your
menu, leaving
your guests curious and hungry
for what kind of masterpiece you might
create next.

been toasted and is dried out, it will ruin
the entire dish and experience. That's
why the base or the quality of the bread
used for an open-faced sandwich is
critical to the success of the sandwich. It
needs to pare well, enhancing the ingredients that you have brought together.

IF YOU'VE GOT A PIZZA OVEN,
BROILER, SALAMANDER (cheese melter)

handheld item. Staying in the breakfast
zone for a moment with an open-faced
morning or anytime delight, consider
Huevos Rancheros. Grill a large flour
tortilla and fold it in half with some
cheddar cheese in it (making a quesadilla). Top it with scrambled eggs, grilled
peppers and onions and more melted
cheddar. Top the folded cheese quesadilla, then garnish with salsa and a drizzle
of sour cream and chopped green onion.

or even a conventional or convection
oven, you are ready to add open-faced
sandwiches to your menu. An openfaced sandwich can take on more than
one description. Bringing it down to
its simplest and most common form, I
would describe an open-faced sandwich
as almost any sandwich that you might
make but instead of topping it with its
second piece of bread, you'd leave the top
off. It would typically be topped with
cheese and heated until the cheese is
melted. That's it in its most basic form.
If you've come to know me over the
years, you know that almost any menu
item that's basic just isn't good enough.
I'll leave basic up to my competitors.
Basic is not going to bring guests back
into your establishment any time soon.
In fact, it will probably make you as
forgettable as yesterday's news. So let's
get cracking and visit some "melts," as
I like to call them (this could be the
headline on your next menu if you were
to decide to add a variety of open-faced
sandwiches).
First, "it's all about that base!" The
main ingredients should obviously be the
stars, but starting with a really great base
can also make or break your offering. As
an example, Eggs Benedict is one of my
absolute favorite breakfasts. And this just
happens to be an open-faced presentation. It's an English muffin, topped with
Canadian bacon, two poached eggs and
finished with hollandaise sauce. If the
English muffin is buttered, grilled and
served fresh, the dish is perfect (as long
as the rest of the ingredients are done
right). Now if the English muffin has
4 0 / P I Z Z AT O D AY. C O M / N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 7

AN OPEN-FACED SANDWICH WILL
USUALLY BE SERVED AND EATEN WITH
A FORK and knife since it is no longer a

TURNING A BASIC SANDWICH INTO A
"MELT," LET'S START WITH A POPULAR
SANDWICH and go with an open-faced

Reuben. I'd grill once piece of marbled
rye then spread some Thousand Island
dressing on it. I'd heat six ounces of
sliced corned beef with a couple ounces
of sauerkraut, then place that on the
bread and top it with Swiss cheese and
melt it in the oven. Serve it on a plate
with a side and a pickle. Now you're off
to the races and on your way to creating
some great melts!
Here's an old lunch-time favorite
from a country club I worked at. It was
a Tuna Melt, which was very popular
at lunch, quick and very simple to put
together. We grilled both halves of an
English muffin on a buttered flat top
grill for about a minute. We'd add a
scoop of tuna salad to each half. Each
half then gets topped with a slice of
tomato and then a slice of Swiss. That
would find its way into the broiler and
take 90 seconds to two minutes before
the cheese was melted and the tuna was
warm.
Before I share some of my favorite
creations, I want to share an open-faced
prime rib sandwich that I always ran

afternoons and evenings or weekend
with a prime rib dinner special. Anytime
you cut an 8-rounce slice of prime rib,
grill it and then serve it over a piece of
grilled or toasted bread (like a nice piece
of rosemary focaccia) with a side of au
jus, it's a really great day. That makes a
phenomenal special that most folks can't
pass up.
YOU CAN NOW TAKE MANY OF YOUR
INGREDIENT COMBINATIONS, find that

great bread base and bake them together
topped with a great cheese and you're off
to the races. A French dip is an openfaced sandwich that is a hand held. You
would dip some thinly sliced roast beef
in hot au jus (natural beef broth), place
the roast beef on an opened French
baguette, melt some Swiss or provolone
on it and serve it with a side of au jus to
dip the sandwich in.
A Turkey Avocado Melt is one of my
favorites. Top a slice of multigrain bread
with a spread of garlic aioli, four ounces
sliced turkey breast, sliced tomato,
sliced fresh avocado and a slice of great
cheese like Muenster or Havarti. Send
it through the oven to melt that cheese.
(Bacon is an excellent addition to this
melt.)
This is my favorite time of year
because of Thanksgiving feasts, and
here's a perfect melt to fit this holiday.
Top a slice of whole wheat bread with
a spread of a couple ounces of stuffing
(dressing), then a couple ounces of cranberry sauce, four ounces of turkey breast
and a slice of cheddar cheese and send it
through the oven. This is oh so good!
AS YOU CAN SEE, UNDERSTANDING THE FUNDAMENTALS OF BUILDING
A GREAT OPEN-FACED SANDWICH, or

"melt," is pretty darn easy and just takes a
little creativity while elevating your
offering to a heightened culinary presentation! Give it a shot. You've got nothing
to lose and some extra sales to gain! n
JEFFREY FREEHOF is a frequent Pizza
Today contributor, chef and restaurant
consultant.


http://www.PIZZATODAY.COM

Pizza Today - November 2017

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pizza Today - November 2017

Pizza Today - November 2017
Commentary
Contents
Contributors
Expo Spotlight
Interact
Conversation
Man on the Street
Respecting the Craft
At Your Service
Destinations
Knead to Know
Menu Boards
Sauce & Cheese Pairings
Open-Faced Sandwiches
Mac & Cheese Main Dishes
Customer Demographics
Immigration Enforcement
Forced Closure
Road to Pizza Expo
Top 100 Pizza Chains
On the Road: Fire!, Spokane, Wa
On the Road: The Boiler Room, Spokane, Wa
Pizza Today Yellow Pages
The Marketplace
Reader’s Resource
Mike’s Monthy Tip
Pizza Today - November 2017 - CT1
Pizza Today - November 2017 - CT2
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Pizza Today - November 2017
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Cover2
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Commentary
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 4
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 5
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Contents
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 7
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 8
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 9
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Contributors
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 11
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Expo Spotlight
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 13
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Interact
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 15
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Conversation
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 17
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Man on the Street
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 19
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Respecting the Craft
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 21
Pizza Today - November 2017 - At Your Service
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 23
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Destinations
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 25
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Knead to Know
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 27
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 28
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 29
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Menu Boards
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 31
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 32
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 33
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Sauce & Cheese Pairings
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 35
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 36
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 37
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Open-Faced Sandwiches
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 39
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 40
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 41
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Mac & Cheese Main Dishes
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 43
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 44
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 45
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Customer Demographics
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 47
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 48
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 49
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Immigration Enforcement
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 51
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 52
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 53
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Forced Closure
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 55
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 56
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 57
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Road to Pizza Expo
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 59
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 60
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 61
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Top 100 Pizza Chains
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 63
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 64
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 65
Pizza Today - November 2017 - On the Road: Fire!, Spokane, Wa
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 67
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 68
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 69
Pizza Today - November 2017 - On the Road: The Boiler Room, Spokane, Wa
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 71
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 72
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 73
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 74
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 75
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 76
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 77
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Pizza Today Yellow Pages
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 79
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 80
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 81
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 82
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 83
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 84
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 85
Pizza Today - November 2017 - The Marketplace
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 87
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 88
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 89
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 90
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 91
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 92
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 93
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 94
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 95
Pizza Today - November 2017 - 96
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Reader’s Resource
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Mike’s Monthy Tip
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Cover3
Pizza Today - November 2017 - Cover4
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