Sandwiches don't need to be made only of peanut butter and jelly, bologna and cheese or bacon and tomato. Traditional fillings are fine for brown-bagging it to the office or school, but just about anything you can put on a plate you can put between two slices of bread, in a roll, a pita bread pocket or even a wrapping of its own pastry.
The ideas that appear here began with just such ingredients. Pita breads are filled with a mixture of ground beef and corn in a barbecue-style sauce. Puff pastry is used to wrap a filling of tuna and broccoli in cheese sauce; sweet-and-sour chicken makes a tangy but low-calorie filling for pita breads, and, for the vegetarian, we have a medley of buttered vegetables topped with Swiss cheese and tomatoes to serve on a French roll.
Completing the Meal
Check the nutritional data shown with each recipe and plan a side dish and beverage that will complement the food values to make a complete meal out of these sandwiches. The Barbecued Beef Pita Sandwiches need only a glass of milk and piece of fruit to provide a nutritionally balanced meal, but the Tuna Turnovers With Mustard Sauce need supplements of Vitamin A, thiamine, riboflavin, calcium and iron. A glass of whole milk will provide the needed Vitamin A, riboflavin and calcium, as well as a little thiamine. For more thiamine and a little iron, add an orange and, for dessert, a bran muffin made with molasses and a few dried apricots.
Although all the sandwiches here are served hot, that doesn't mean they can't be toted off to office, school or a picnic. If the sandwich isn't going to be eaten within an hour or so, it is best to pack the hot filling separately in a wide-mouth vacuum container to keep it hot and to prevent bacterial growth.
For a close-by picnic, the sandwiches can travel in a snug wrapping of heavy aluminum foil. Package all the sandwiches together with sections of newspaper around them for further insulation. Remember, there's no enjoyment or nutritional benefit in food that isn't safe to eat.
1 pound ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup catsup
2 tablespoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 (10-ounce) package frozen corn in butter sauce
1 tomato, chopped
6 pita breads
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
Brown ground beef with onion and garlic in large skillet. Drain. Add catsup, chili powder, cumin, pepper, corn and tomato. Cover and simmer 8 to 10 minutes or until corn can be separated by stirring. Continue to simmer 3 to 4 minutes or until corn is tender.
Cut pita breads in halves. Spoon 1/3 cup beef mixture into each half. Spoon about 1 tablespoon cheese on top of each sandwich. Wrap each in foil and place on baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees 15 to 20 minutes or until cheese is melted and sandwich is thoroughly heated. Makes 6 servings.
PER SERVING: 540 calories; 29 gm protein; 58 gm carbohydrate; 21 gm fat; 410 mg sodium; 400 mg potassium.
Protein 45% Riboflavin 20% Vitamin A 30% Niacin 25% Vitamin C 20% Calcium 20% Thiamine 25% Iron 25% TUNA TURNOVERS
WITH MUSTARD SAUCE
1 (10-ounce) package frozen cut broccoli with cheese-flavored sauce in pouch
2 (7-ounce) cans tuna in water, drained
2 hard-cooked eggs
1/4 cup chopped onion
2 tablespoons pickle relish
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
1 (11 1/4-ounce) package frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon water
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
Dash cayenne pepper
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
Thaw broccoli in pouch by placing in bowl of hot water 15 to 20 minutes.
Combine tuna, eggs, onion, pickle relish and dry mustard in large bowl. Fold in thawed broccoli.
On floured board, roll out each puff pastry sheet to 12-inch square. Cut each sheet into four squares. Spoon tuna mixture evenly among squares. In small bowl, combine egg yolk and water. Brush small amount on pastry edges to help seal. Fold pastry diagonally. Crimp edges with fork to seal. Pierce top of turnovers with fork. Brush with remaining egg wash. Place on greased baking sheets. Place in 450-degree oven and immediately reduce heat to 400 degrees. Bake 20 minutes or until golden brown.
Meanwhile, in small saucepan, melt butter. Stir in flour, salt and cayenne pepper. Cook until mixture is smooth and bubbly. Gradually add milk. Cook until mixture boils and thickens. Stir in mustard. Serve with warm turnovers. Makes 8 servings.
PER SERVING: 290 calories; 18 gm protein; 19 gm carbohydrate; 15 gm fat; 550 mg sodium; 275 mg potassium.
Protein 30% Riboflavin 10% Vitamin A 15% Niacin 30% Vitamin C 25% Calcium 08% Thiamine 04% Iron 06% VEGETABLE HEROES
1 (10-ounce) package frozen cauliflower
1 (10-ounce) package frozen Brussels sprouts
1 (10-ounce) package frozen broccoli florets
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 teaspoons prepared mustard
1/4 cup finely chopped green onions
6 French rolls (5 1/2x3 inches)
6 slices Swiss cheese, halved
2 medium tomatoes, thinly sliced
Prepare cauliflower, Brussels sprouts and broccoli according to package directions. Drain well. Beat together butter and mustard, then stir in green onions. Cut 1-inch slice from top of rolls. Hollow out lower sections of rolls, leaving 1/2-inch shell. (Reserve crumbs for another use.) Spread insides and tops of rolls with mustard butter. Fill rolls with vegetables. Top with cheese and tomato slices. Replace tops of rolls. Wrap each roll in foil and arrange on shallow baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees 25 minutes. Makes 6 servings.
PER SERVING: 508 calories; 20 gm protein; 47 gm carbohydrate; 28 gm fat; 866 mg sodium; 535 mg potassium.
Protein 31% Riboflavin 26% Vitamin A 57% Niacin 16% Vitamin C 152% Calcium 41% Thiamine 25% Iron 17% SWEET-SOUR CHICKEN
3 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon cornstarch
3/4 cup chicken broth
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 cup catsup
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 clove garlic, minced
Dash Chinese 5-spice powder, optional
2 cups chopped cooked chicken
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped water chestnuts
6 pita breads
1 1/2 cups alfalfa sprouts
Combine brown sugar and cornstarch in heavy pan. Stir in chicken broth, soy sauce, catsup, lemon juice, garlic, ginger and 5-spice powder. Cook over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Stir in chicken, celery and water chestnuts and heat through. Halve pita breads, spoon in chicken mixture and top with alfalfa sprouts. Makes 6 servings.
PER SERVING: 219 calories; 19 gm protein; 29 gm carbohydrate; 2 gm fat; 695 mg sodium; 355 mg potassium.
Protein 30% Riboflavin 07% Vitamin A 06% Niacin 32% Vitamin C 07% Calcium 05% Thiamine 09% Iron 13% HOT CHEESEY TUNA BUNS
1 (6 1/2-ounce) can tuna, drained
4 ounces Cheddar cheese, cut in cubes
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon instant minced onion
4 hamburger buns
Combine tuna, cheese, celery, mayonnaise and onion in medium bowl. Spoon onto bottom halves of buns. Cover with top halves. Wrap sandwiches in foil. Bake at 350 degrees about 20 minutes or until hot and cheese is melted. Makes 4 servings.
PER SERVING: 450 calories; 23 gm protein; 23 gm carbohydrate; 29 gm fat; 867 mg sodium; 254 mg potassium.
Protein 35% Riboflavin 17% Vitamin A 10% Niacin 32% Vitamin C 03% Calcium 26% Thiamine 13% Iron 11%