Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Tuesday in Point Reyes: Kate’s Point Reyes Avocado Sandwich

I have a confession to make. I am a planner. I love to make lists, and even have a "book of lists". When I plan a vacation, I really plan it. Particularly the meals. I scout out restaurants way in advance, reading reviews, checking ratings, and asking friends and acquaintances for recommendations. I even memorize the menus and determine which items I want to order in advance. During our last trip to California, I did a substantial amount of planning, however I did not plan for it to be Tuesday.

After waking from our last night in San Francisco, we picked up our rental car, drove across the Golden Gate Bridge (Full House, anyone?), and spent some time in the Marin Headlands taking foggy pictures of the bridges and the bay.

We drove north through Mt. Tamalpais State Park, and then on to Point Reyes Station, where we planned to eat lunch before heading out to the Point Reyes National Seashore and Lighthouse.

We discovered Cowgirl Creamery cheese last year at the San Francisco Ferry Building Marketplace, and had planned to treat ourselves to some more Mt. Tam and Red Hawk cheese at their original creamery in downtown Point Reyes Station. Much to our chagrin, they were closed. Closed on Tuesday? Who closes on a Tuesdays? Sure, maybe Sunday, or even Monday. But Tuesday? We were starving, pressed for time, and had nowhere to eat. We got back in the car, and drove down the main drag (which is only about two blocks), and at the end of the row, we saw the Station House Café.

We checked the menu, saw many options to our liking, and also noticed that they had a beautiful garden for dining alfresco. Little did we know that we had stumbled upon a local gem! The Station House Café uses fresh, organic and sustainable ingredients from local farmers and from their own gardens. (They are open six days a week. Tuesday is one of those days!) My husband ordered their clam chowder and a bacon and fried oyster omelet. I was on a kick of trying to eat as many avocadoes as possible while on the west coast, and ordered their Avocado Sandwich. The sandwich tasted so fresh, and was so healthy with all of the veggies loaded on it. It was an $8 sandwich, and turned out to be one of my more memorable meals on our 10-day trip! Sometimes it’s okay not to plan everything.

Our lunch in Point Reyes was only day 4 of our trip, and I could not stop thinking about this sandwich for the rest of the week! I replicated it the first night we returned home, and haven’t stopped since. Each time I make it, it seems to taste better and better. You need to have several fresh ingredients around for this, and if you purchase pre-sliced vegetables (for example, mushrooms and carrots), your assembly will go quite quickly. In lieu of making a tomato coulis, as their version calls for, I simply use tomato paste (which I love and will gladly eat out of the can with a spoon. Or my finger.). Not only do I love the tastes and textures of this sandwich, but the colors are beautiful too!

Kate’s Point Reyes Avocado Sandwich

(Please note that the ingredient measurements are listed per sandwich. You should adjust the quantities for the number of sandwiches you wish to make.)
* 2 slices whole grain or wheat bread
* ¼ avocado, sliced
* 1 tablespoon Italian Seasoning Tomato Paste
* ¼ cup cremini mushrooms, sliced
* ¼ cup broccoli sprouts
* 2 tablespoons sliced carrots
* 2 tablespoons green onion, trimmed, quartered lengthwise, and cut into 2-inch lengths

Lightly toast bread in toaster or toaster oven. Allow bread to slightly cool so it is easy to handle. Spread tomato paste on one side of each slice of bread. Layer remaining ingredients on one slice of bread. Finish by topping with other bread slice, and cut in half to serve.

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