From peanut butter to kimchi
An evolution of my favorite sandwich
You know how every family seems to have a handful of stories that get repeated over and over again? The ones that you don’t know if you actually remember them happening, or if you’ve just heard them so many times that they’ve become a false memory? In my family, the trinity of stories featuring young Kiki as a main character include striking a deal with my older cousin to trade him a turtle that I had found for a kitten, watching The Wizard of Oz every day for months in a row and wanting to be called Dorothy, and the only one relevant to this newsletter: that the year I was in kindergarten I took a can of peaches and a corn dog for lunch to school every day.
As an adult, I have some questions here. Just how did this pattern start? Why corn dogs? How did I suddenly decide to venture out and try new lunch foods?
And I did eventually decide to move on to other foods. Namely peanut butter sandwiches. This part I remember because I was older. From the time I was seven or eight until I was maybe 15 years old, the only sandwich I would eat was a peanut butter sandwich, and that’s what I ate for lunch every day. Or that’s what my family will tell you. The truth is, I also rotated in other culinary delicacies such as pizza Lunchables (there will definitely be a future post on Lunchables), and I bought school lunch whenever it was chicken nugget day. Clearly, I was the pinnacle of healthy eating as a child (in reality I was just an extremely picky eater). Oh yeah, and another important fact: none of my food could touch. Ever.
Knowing this, you would probably be surprised to learn that my current favorite sandwich is a vegan mash-up of avocado, hummus, and various raw vegetables featuring kimchi as the pièce de résistance. Self-described “health food nut” Dawn was always my favorite character in the Baby-Sitters Club book series (I promise this is the last newsletter that I mention the BSC… for now), and I feel like this sandwich would make her proud.
The sandwich comes from Golubka Kitchen, which if you follow me on my personal Instagram you know is the source for a good portion of the recipes I try and post. If I seem like a GK fan girl, it’s because I am, and I’m sure this won’t be the last of their recipes that I talk about. I make the sandwich as listed, with a few minor changes: I mount it on chapata from my favorite panadería (shout out to Panem), skip the sprouts, and plate it as two open-faced halves because there’s no way I could eat it without getting it all over myself if I made it as a regular sandwich.
And that’s the only caution with this sandwich. You will get messy. It’s slathered with thick layers of hummus, mashed avocado, cucumber, lettuce, and kimchi. Then topped with a carrot-beet relish. Read: this is not the sandwich to pack for a first date picnic.
But honestly, getting covered in avocado and beet juice is so worth it. This sandwich is the perfect mix of crunchiness, creaminess, and tartness, with a hint of sweet. Just don’t wear white.
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